Liverpool-Hull City Preview
Hull City welcome Liverpool to the KC Stadium on Tuesday as the club's Premier League survival struggle continues.
Steve Bruce's Hull (7-10-16) picked up their first win in seven games with a 2-0 victory at Crystal Palace on Saturday. The result lifted Hull to 31 points, but they are just a single point clear of the relegation zone with a tough run of fixtures between now and the end of the season - Arsenal, Burnley, Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester United - still to come.
The Tigers' daunting run-in starts with Liverpool on Tuesday, but Bruce will take confidence from the quality of his side's performance against Palace.
"The thing that pleased me most is the fact that we played without fear," Bruce said. "We got it down and we passed it and we looked a very, very good team at times. I know we've let ourselves down occasionally this year, but today was one of those performances which we know we're capable of.
"There are no more excuses - the one thing that can't be leveled at the squad is that they are not committed to the cause. They are absolutely determined to stay here."
Visitors Liverpool (17-7-9) will arrive at the KC Stadium in a vulnerable state. Brendan Rodgers' side were knocked out of the FA Cup by Aston Villa a week ago, and Saturday's 0-0 draw with West Bromwich Albion left the Reds with just four points from their last four league games.
The stalemate at West Brom saw Liverpool slip seven points off the Champions League qualification places, but the players aren't giving up hope of catching fourth-placed Manchester United.
"I still feel that if we pick up maximum points from the remaining games, we'll be unlucky not to get into that fourth spot," midfielder Adam Lallana said. "It's still possible and while it's still possible, we'll keep giving our all. We're representing Liverpool Football Club and we go into every game wanting to win.
"We'll dust ourselves down, go again, go to Hull and try to get three points to hopefully put as much pressure on the teams above us as possible. We've just got to focus on ourselves. It'll be a difficult place to go - they're still fighting for their lives down at the bottom. It will be a tough game, but we've got to go there and play our game and hopefully we'll get three points. You want to get back to winning ways as quickly as possible."
Liverpool go into the game with fitness doubts over Alberto Moreno (knock) and Lucas Leiva (hip), while Mamadou Sakho (hamstring) is out and Daniel Sturridge continues to struggle to regain full fitness.
Hull will be missing Nikica Jelavic (knee) and Curtis Davis (hip), but may have Andy Robertson and Mohamed Diame back after ankle and knee problems, respectively.
It was a 0-0 draw when these teams met at Anfield earlier in the season, making it three draws between the two clubs in seven total Premier League meetings. Hull have only beaten Liverpool once, but that victory did come in the fixture at the KC Stadium last season.