JORDAN HENDERSON has been handed a potential opening day debut against his former club Sunderland after the 2011/12 Premier League season fixtures were announced today.
Liverpool host Steve Bruce’s side as the season gets underway on August 13, while Everton journey to North London in search of three points from Tottenham.
Supporters will not have to wait long for the first Merseyside derby of the campaign, at Goodison on October 1.
Liverpool fans will relish a mouth-watering October when their progress under Kenny Dalglish will be tested, with Manchester United up next after the derby.
Boxing Day sees Liverpool face Blackburn at Anfield, while Evertonians must journey to Sunderland.
Tranmere Rovers begin their Npower League One campaign by entertaining Chesterfield on August 6.
The first fixture of 2012 hands Liverpool an exciting visit to Manchester City, while Everton host Bolton.
Liverpool’s end of season run in features a mix of old foes and new prospects, with the long trip to Norwich on April 28, before Chelsea visit Anfield on May 5. The Reds end their season with a first Premier league trip to Swansea.
Everton must try to record a rare away win at Old Trafford on April 21 when they take on United and their campaign ends with a trip to Wolves on May 5, before Newcastle arrive at Goodison for the final game of the season on August 13.
Steven Gerrard admits Liverpool face a tough start – but remains confident.
He said: "It is a massive test early on. It's nice to have a home game first, the fans will be right up for it.
"Hopefully we will have a few new signings in and we can start the season with three points which would give us the confidence to then go and get a good result at Arsenal.
"It's important to hit the ground running if you want to compete for the title. You can't afford slip-ups early on.”