Stoke aim for historic win at Anfield over a rejuvenated Liverpool side

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The Independent Online

Stoke manager Tony Pulis is preparing for his side's visit to Anfield tonight knowing that his men will not have it all their own way as they did when they last played Liverpool.

City's 2-0 home win in November was one of the many low points of Roy Hodgson's ill-fated and brief reign in charge at Anfield. That result and other similar setbacks eventually convinced the club's owners Hodgson's time was up, prompting Kenny Dalglish to make a return to the managerial hotseat.

Liverpool have won their last two league games and Pulis knows his players will have to earn their first double in 54 years, when both clubs were in the old Division Two. Stoke have never beaten Liverpool at Anfield in 47 top-flight matches.

Pulis said: "Liverpool are playing with a lot more confidence, a lot more willingness to do what they are capable of as a group of players under Kenny and they have certainly turned things around.

"Beating them at our place was a special occasion but I think a lot of sides were getting tremendous results against them back then.

"Things will be different this time but what we have to do is go there and give it our best shot. We know it's going to be tough.

"Anfield is one of the special places to go and, after what has happened there recently, it will, no doubt, be another big occasion."

It will be Liverpool's first game since the shock departure of Fernando Torres to Chelsea, so new signing Luis Suarez will lead the line if he can get a work permit and international clearance in time.

Andy Carroll, their other deadline-day capture, will watch injured from the stands, but Pulis is aware of how dangerous Liverpool remain, even without Torres. He added: "Suarez is a top, top replacement, and they have a number of other players who can hurt you."

Stoke progressed to the fifth round of the FA Cup with a win at Wolves on Sunday and Pulis is hoping for another away success.

He said: "I'm sure our supporters are looking forward to it. They were fantastic on Sunday. It was a great boost to walk out at Molineux and see our section full.

"It would be nice if we can go to Anfield and put on a display like the one there in our first season in the Premier League. We'll certainly be doing our best to repeat that."