As the great Bill Shankly once said "There are only two sides in Liverpool. Liverpool and Liverpool reserves." Things have changed since Shanks' time, however, and now it seems that Liverpool's reserves are playing down south somewhere.
Much to the continued dismay of Saints fans everywhere, Liverpool certainly seem to have had their pick of Southampton's best players - the likes of Lallana, Lovren and, most recently, Mané all playing a crucial part in Liverpool's fledgling title campaign. Of course, as they always seem to, the Saints have replaced these players and continue to show solid, if unspectacular, league form. They're not going down, but they're not getting into the European places. As such, a cup seems to be a beacon of light in what would inevitably be another safe, but uninspiring season.
So let's look at their form:
FA Cup - Third Round: Norwich City 2-2 Southampton - Sat 7 Jan
Premier League - Everton 3-0 Southampton - Mon 2 Jan
Premier League - Southampton 1-2 West Bromwich Albion - Sat 31 Dec
Premier League - Southampton 1-4 Tottenham Hotspur - Wed 28 Dec
Premier League - Bournemouth 1-3 Southampton - Sun 18 Dec
It's pretty clear that the Saints are in a bad patch of form, with a win against their rivals - Bournemouth - being their only win in 5, which even includes a home loss to Pulis' West Brom. Sure, their form of late has been poor, but they will certainly be up for this tie. A look at Liverpool
With a media fuelled hatred of our defence/goal keeper situation, a lot of Liverpool fans are failing to appreciate how far we've come in the last year. Despite recent draws against Sunderland and Plymouth, The Reds remain in contention for 3 cups this year and with a European-free season, each game, be it cup or league, will receive the attention it needs. With Mane gone, someone will inevitably step in hoping to make the place their own and key-men Matip and Coutinho are on their way back - providing a boost to the Liverpool ranks. Some quick facts
23 different teams have lifted the League Cup, with Liverpool having taken the silverware a record eight times.
The last time Liverpool faced Southampton in the League Cup was a 6-1 away win for the Reds
Southampton have never won the league cup and have featured in the final just once, losing to Nottingham Forest 3-2 back in 1979
Come on you Reds!