Liverpool came in second in the Premier League last season, but lost Luis Suarez, who transferred to Barcelona. Suarez led the EPL in goals last season and the loss is a big one even though the Reds are the big betting favorite at home facing Southampton in their opening league match.
While Southampton is the underdog in this match they finished in the top 10 in the league last season. However, they lost many of their key players from last season.
Southampton did sell many key players from last season, but added some solid ones this season bringing in Fraser Forster, Dusan Tadic and Graziano Pelle and bringing in Ryan Bertrand and Saphir Taider on loans.
Bovada has Liverpool as the Premier League betting favorite at -300 with Southampton at +650 and a draw line of +450.
With Suarez gone there is that much more pressure on Daniel Sturridge to be THE man up front. He had a solid season last year, but health is an issue and he has to stay on the pitch.
Rickie Lambert was one of the many signings by the Reds this summer and he and Sturridge will lead the Liverpool attack.
Raheem Sterling will also get more shots on goal from the wing with Suarez now in Spain and the youngster may have a breakout season. No matter how you cut it the Southampton defense has their work cut out for them in this match.
The Reds have a better midfield and even with some new additions the MF is led by veteran Steven Gerrard. Southampton will have to play well in that area of the pitch both playing solid defense and looking for the counter-attack, which may be their best chance to score.
Last season at Liverpool Southampton pulled off the upset beating the Reds 1-0.