Sunderland reached a 0-0 draw with Arsenal to start the year and most recently tied Swansea 2-2. The club's two points in the standings land Sunderland No. 13 in the EPL standings.
Having secured only one point in the standings thus far, Liverpool's performance to open the season leaves the squad an uphill battle the rest of the season. So far, they've been outscored 7-2 in their opening three games.
This weekend would be the perfect time for the Reds to start a turnaround.
Where: The Stadium of Light, Sunderland, England
When: Saturday, September 15, 12:30 p.m. ET
Live Stream: FoxSoccer2Go
Liverpool Team Breakdown
Liverpool's offense has been downright dreadful to start the 2012 EPL campaign. According to Yahoo!'s Opta, Liverpool has the lowest conversion rate on shot attempts at 5.6 percent. Additionally, the team has only been on target with 25 percent of attempts to start the year.
Granted, the Reds have faced tough opponents in two of the first three matches. In fact, Liverpool's first two goals amounted to a 2-0 lead against Man City, but the squad was unable to hold on for the victory. The game ended in a 2-2 draw, Liverpool's most impressive finish thus far.
Heading on the road, Liverpool can take solace in the fact that Sunderland has not recorded an EPL victory in its last ten league games. However, the new Liverpool manager takes over the team that has only won four of its last 18 in league play.
For this weekend's match to be a success and begin to revive Liverpool's season hopes, the team needs an outstanding performance from forward Luis Suarez. As offense has been the main cause for concern thus far, Suarez must convert to give the Reds a chance.
Liverpool also has much to look forward to in forward Raheem Sterling. The 17-year-old youngster just received a promotion to join the English national team.
His promotion comes just after making his first league start against defending champion Manchester City. Sterling is an exciting talent and should very soon provide the offensive explosiveness the Reds currently lack.
Sunderland Team Breakdown
Sunderland has yet to break through this season. They are ahead of Liverpool in the standings but only by a point. Manager Martin O'Neill has proven able to keep his squad in the game but has also failed to earn a victory.
A home match against the stumbling Reds should be just what the doctor ordered for the Black Cats, right?
Over the last six games in The Stadium of Light, Liverpool has shut out Sunderland four times. Additionally, O'Neill's Black Cats have only won six of 17 matches against Liverpool under their current manager.
This time, they'll turn to their 2011-12 Player of the Year, Stephane Sessegnon, in hopes of a positive result. Yet he cannot go it alone.
Sunderland will have to fire more than their current low average of four shots per game to get past Pepe Reina on Saturday.
Sunderland will once again fail to prove home field advantage to be a factor in The Stadium of Light. Liverpool will win on an exciting late goal from Suarez by the final score of 2-1.
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