Two Merseyside rivals in very different veins of form renew hostilities for Wednesday's Premier League derby, as Everton and Liverpool face off at Goodison Park.
The Toffees went down 1-0 to Brentford last time out, while Jurgen Klopp's side eased to a 4-0 victory at home to Southampton.
As the old saying goes, form goes out of the window when it comes to such a hotly-contested derby, and Everton's recent record against Liverpool at Goodison Park will certainly serve as encouragement.
Each of the last four meetings between the sides on the Toffees' turf has ended level, but a weakened Everton backline and misfiring attack are ill-equipped to take a point from this clash, with Klopp's men sweeping aside almost everything in front of them at present.
Everton manager Rafael Benitez sought to immediately endear himself to the Goodison Park faithful with a bright start to the new campaign, but an alarming decline has seen the Toffees' strong opening to the 2021-22 season firmly consigned to history.
Winless in the top flight since sinking Norwich City back in September, Everton became the latest victims of newly-promoted Brentford last time out, as an Ivan Toney penalty 24 minutes in was all that was needed to separate the two sides on Sunday.
Having now suffered five defeats from their last six in the Premier League - including each of their last three away from home - Everton have slipped to 14th in the table, and one of the Premier League's ever-presents are now just six points above the relegation zone.
With star striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin spending more time in the treatment room than on the pitch this term, Everton have now gone three Premier League games without finding the back of the net, and Benitez's reunion with the Reds is looking certain to be a forgettable occasion.
After posting three wins from their first three at Goodison Park this term, Everton have since taken just one point from the last nine on offer on home soil, which will be music to the ears of Klopp's in-form crop.
Diogo Jota was forced to swap Ultimate Team for the Liverpool team on Saturday, with the Portuguese attacker withdrawing from a FIFA 22 tournament in time to lead the line and bag a brace during a routine crushing of Southampton.
Jota tapped in with just two minutes on the clock before paying tribute to the video game with his controller-mimicking celebration, and the ex-Wolverhampton Wanderers man would proceed to bag a second while Thiago Alcantara and Virgil van Dijk also netted.
A fourth consecutive Anfield win and clean sheet in all competitions saw Liverpool take advantage of Chelsea's draw against Manchester United to move to within two points of the league leaders, but the third-placed Reds are also one adrift of Manchester City after 13 games.
Klopp will need no reminding of the importance of points over the Christmas period before his ranks are depleted during the Africa Cup of Nations, but for a team that has scored at least two goals in each of their last 17 games in all tournaments, finding attacking inspiration should not be a challenge.
Liverpool and Everton played out a 2-2 draw in this fixture last term - which was best remembered for Van Dijk's devastating injury - but the Toffees managed to win 2-0 at Anfield during the Reds' home rut, and Benitez has all the motivation he needs to turn his side's fortunes around here.
Everton will welcome Richarlison back from suspension with open arms for this contest, but Mason Holgate will have to spend one more game on the naughty step.
Calvert-Lewin ought to return at some point before Christmas, but it will not be this weekend, while Yerry Mina, Tom Davies and Andre Gomes are all set to miss out as well, despite the latter's return to training.
Salomon Rondon is sure to drop out of the XI to accommodate the returning Richarlison, and Anthony Gordon may also make way if Demarai Gray is deemed fit to start.
As for Liverpool, the injured quintet of Naby Keita, Joe Gomez, Harvey Elliott, Roberto Firmino and Curtis Jones are still sidelined, but Klopp has no fresh concerns from the Southampton win.
The Reds manager will be reluctant to rotate for a fiery Merseyside derby, with the only real dilemma coming in defence, where Ibrahima Konate will be determined to keep Joel Matip out of the team.
Thiago Alcantara should be fit enough for another start after lasting just under an hour against Southampton, but workhorse James Milner's experience could prove vital in Wednesday's game.
Everton possible starting lineup:
Pickford; Coleman, Keane, Godfrey, Digne; Townsend, Allan, Doucoure, Iwobi; Gray; Richarlison
Liverpool possible starting lineup:
Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Konate, Van Dijk, Robertson; Henderson, Fabinho, Thiago; Salah, Jota, Mane