By 90Min
November 17, 2017

Liverpool will probably be glad to learn that their upcoming opponents Southampton are set to be without an important midfielder in their squad when the two sides face off at Anfield on Saturday.

Mario Lemina, who has made seven appearances for the Saints since joining from Juventus during the last transfer window, hasn't recovered from the ankle injury he suffered in training, albeit already working with his coaches.

Julian Finney/GettyImages

Southampton boss Mauricio Pellegrino confirmed as much on Friday, speaking via the Saints' official website ahead of the crunch clash.

"Mario Lemina was training well, much better than before," Pellegrino said. "But he will not be ready to play Saturday. We look at his problem three weeks ago and he's improved a lot [since then]. But it is too soon to put him on the pitch."

The manager is hoping to watch his team expose gaps in the Reds' set up, as he reckons that their attacking system could create space for his players to attack.

"We are comfortable with the ball, so are they," he added. "We'll try to manage the ball, this will be key to the game. Try to be aggressive, when they [Liverpool] are higher it is an opportunity for us to create problems," he said.

"It will be really tough, but maybe against those teams that are more offensive, you have the chances to find more space."

Southampton have only recorded one win from their last six matches and their form is rather poor, but beating Liverpool could work wonders for the squad mentality as they look to pick things up as the festive season approaches.

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