By Harvey Byrne

Mark Lawrenson has predicted a Liverpool victory against Sunderland at Anfield on Saturday.

The Reds are set to welcome the Black Cats sat in second, while their opponents are placed in 19th.

Sunderland have seen a recent upturn in form with two victories from their previous two fixtures.

However, BBC pundit Lawrenson believes their mini-run will end and has gone for a 2-0 Liverpool victory.

“Sunderland’s results have picked up of late but their injury problems keep on coming,” wrote Lawrenson for the BBC Sport website. “Black Cats defender Paddy McNair is the latest victim, and he is out for the rest of the season.

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“I think their revival ends this weekend, though. David Moyes’ side will put up a fight at Anfield, but it is hard to see them getting anything there.

“Yes, Southampton stopped the Reds from scoring last weekend, but they still had enough chances to win more than one game, and they will open Sunderland up too.”

Liverpool know that a victory on Saturday could move them to the top of the Premier League table after 13 matches.

Their main competitors Chelsea play later in the day and are facing Tottenham at home, who will provide a harder test for the Blues than Sunderland will for Liverpool.

Jurgen Klopp’s team have surpassed pre-season expectations, but they will now have their eyes firmly set on their first Premier League title.

The advantage of not playing European football in the week should also aid the Reds, as it did in 2014.

However, Chelsea are also without midweek fixtures and they could throw another spanner in the works for Liverpool, as they did two years ago.

The Merseysiders have not lost since their second match of the season against Burnley and they will be keen to maintain their good run against David Moyes’ team.

In other Liverpool news, Jamie Redknapp has given his verdict on the Reds title chances.