Stoke will be looking to continue their strong record against Liverpool at the Britannia Stadium in their Premier League opener on Sunday.

Stoke captain Ryan Shawcross will miss at least the first two months of the season after booking in for a back operation, and Mark Hughes has doubts over another centre-back, Marc Wilson, ahead of the first game of the new season.

Marko Arnautovic is another concern for the Potters boss, but new signings Glen Johnson, Marco van Ginkel, Ibrahim Afellay and Joselu could all be in the squad, while Bojan may also make his return to competitive action from the bench.

Liverpool, meanwhile, are likely to hand debuts to Nathaniel Clyne, James Milner, Christian Benteke and Danny Ings, but Roberto Firmino lacks match fitness, while Daniel Sturridge, Joe Allen and Jon Flanagan are all injured.

Kick-off at the Britannia Stadium on Sunday is at 4pm.

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Stoke v Liverpool will be the first fixture in Premier League history to be played in consecutive games at the same venue.

Liverpool’s 6-1 defeat in this fixture on the final day of 2014-15 saw them concede six times in the league for the first time since 1963 (2-7 v Spurs).

Liverpool have only drawn a blank three times on the opening weekend of a Premier League campaign (92/93, 05/06, 12/13).

Stoke have won just once on the opening weekend of a Premier League season - 2009-10 versus Burnley.

Liverpool have been shown more yellow cards on the opening weekend than any other team in Premier League history (44).

Stoke have scored 21 goals from outside the box in two PL seasons under Mark Hughes; they scored 13 in five under Tony Pulis.

The Reds have only won one of seven Premier League games at the Britannia (D2 L4), winning 5-3 in 2013-14.

Roberto Firmino has recorded 21 assists over the last two seasons, more than any other Brazilian in the top five European leagues.

If only English goals counted, Liverpool would have finished top of the Premier League last season on 71 points, nine ahead of Crystal Palace and Tottenham.

The Potters have scored in their last 11 home league games; only Chelsea (19) can boast a longer current run..

09/08/15

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