Liverpool have been handed their biggest test of the season as they travel to King Power Stadium to take on Leicester City for Saturday lunchtime’s match against the Foxes, although the Merseysides appear to have been handed an easier boost with the absence of Jamie Vardy in this fixture.
The suspended Englishman would have offered a strong examination of a Liverpool side that is yet to concede a goal when wining their first three matches of the season and Virgil van Dijk would have had his hands full when attempting to stop a skilled striker who has once tormented and tore apart his side defence in the past.
Vardy, who announced his retirement from international football with England in a bid to prolong his club career and in order to spend more time with his family earlier in the week, has netted more Premier League goals against the Merseyside than any other team, scoring seven goals in eight matches.
His seven goals have all been scored in his last five matches against Liverpool, including five goals in three fixtures at the King Power Stadium, and Vardy’s absence will no doubt a huge blow to the Foxes this weekend.
The England striker is set to serve the second match of a three-game match ban following his red card for a reckless tackle on Matt Doherty in the Foxes’ 2-0 win over Wolverhampton Wanderers a few weeks ago and he has been an integral part of Claude Puel’s plans.
The French manager has brought out the best in Vardy having netted 19 goals in 34 appearances since his appointment as the Foxes new boss and it will be interesting to see how his will replace him on Saturday.
Puel, however, have a brilliant record against Liverpool as he has lot only one of his seven managerial meetings with the Reds, winning three matches and drawing three, and his side’s record with Vardy in action is particularly more interesting.
Jamie Vardy has only missed 11 Premier League fixtures since the Foxes returned to the top-flight in 2014/15 season and they have won five, drawn three and lost three fixtures during this time without him. Leicester City, however, have managed to find a way to play in Vardy’s absence who has netted 62 goals in 145 appearances since they earn promotion back in Premier League.
The past Premier League meetings between the Foxes and Liverpool have seen a 17 goals, with Liverpool winning three, and the absence of Vardy ensures that Jurgen Klopp will be confident in his team’s ability to extend their winning start to the season to four games.