Paul Merson: Why Liverpool will scrape to victory over Aston Villa

Paul Merson reckons Liverpool will beat Aston Villa 1-0 on Saturday...

Paul Merson is expecting Liverpool to return to winning ways in the Premier League against Aston Villa on Saturday – but only just.

The Reds have been struggling for form in the English top flight and have not won a league game since their 1-0 win over Bournemouth back on 17 August.

The pressure has been mounting on manager Brendan Rodgers in recent days following the Merseyside outfit’s stuttering form, with Jurgen Klopp and Carlo Ancelotti both touted as possible candidates to replace the Northern Irishman at Anfield.

However, former Arsenal midfielder Merson feels that the Reds are set to go some way towards relieving the pressure on their manager by securing a narrow win over Tim Sherwood’s men on Merseyside on Saturday afternoon.

Merson told Sky Sports: “I don’t know what game Tim Sherwood was watching in midweek. The first half was atrocious. It’s a nervy affair and both teams really need a win, but I’m just going to go with Liverpool by a hair.

“Villa won their first game, but that seems a long, long time ago. We’re still not quite sure what Sherwood’s style is, and results have shown that this season. The derby win against Birmingham was massive.

“I’m a great believer that if teams aren’t winning, they’re not very good. It’s not down to luck with Liverpool; something is not right.

“They failed to beat West Ham, failed to beat Norwich, couldn’t beat Carlisle over 120 minutes. We’re not talking about world-beating teams here.”

Liverpool scraped through to the fourth round of the League Cup on Wednesday night as they beat Carlisle 3-2 on penalties after a 1-1 draw at Anfield.

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