This pair entered December as real title hopefuls with everything to play for at the top.
But they'll begin January with their ambitions severely dented after both suffered a damaging Christmas period, allowing relentless Manchester City to pull clear.
Pep Guardiola's side are now big odds-on favourites to win their fourth Premier League trophy in five years so defeat for either Chelsea or Liverpool on Sunday could be a blow from which they don't recover.
When, where and how to watch
When: Sunday, January 2, 16.30 GMT
Where: Stamford Bridge
Best bets for Chelsea vs Liverpool
You can hardly blame him.
The German coach already has a bee in his bonnet after the punishing Christmas schedule and the vote not to allow five substitutes.
Add in a series of injuries and the outbreak of COVID in the Chelsea camp which has forced him to rush players back and Tuchel feels like everything is against him and his team.
True, they've had to deal with adversity but their squad is big and drawing four of their last five home Premier League games is simply not good enough.
But he won't be the only German manager at Stamford Bridge feeling that the festive period has been hugely costly.
Instead, they were held 2-2 by Tottenham, had their game against Marcelo Bielsa's side called off and then suffered a miserable 1-0 defeat to a Leicester side that had played just two days earlier.
When Mo Salah misses a penalty - as he did at the King Power Stadium - you know the force isn't with you.
Manchester City are now eight points in front of Chelsea after 20 games while Liverpool are nine off the lead although do have a game in hand.
Last three meetings
Liverpool 1-1 Chelsea (August 28, 2021)
Both teams went into this early season fixture with identical records (two wins out of two, five goals scored, none conceded).
Chelsea struck the first blow when Reece James headed home from a 22nd-minute corner but the wing-back was later sent off for blocking a shot on the line with his hand on the stroke of half-time.
Salah put away the penalty but, despite having the extra man, Liverpool couldn't break down the well-drilled Blues' defence in a frustrating second 45 and had to settle for a point.
Liverpool 0-1 Chelsea (March 4, 2021)
After going 68 games unbeaten at Anfield, the Reds suffered an extraordinary run of six straight home league defeats from January to March.
Chelsea were the fifth straight team to walk off with the points and their victory was deserved.
With their confidence and energy low, Liverpool managed just a single shot on target.
Chelsea 0-2 Liverpool (September 20, 2020)
Having hoisted the Premier League trophy just two months earlier, Liverpool had a spring in their step and eased to a comfortable 2-0 win against Frank Lampard's side.
The game turned firmly their way on the stroke of half-time when Anders Christiansen was red carded for hauling down Sadio Mane.
Mane then headed home Roberto Firmino's cross five minutes after the break before charging down Kepa's clearance and helping himself to a second soon after.
Chelsea had a glimmer of hope when Werner was tripped by Thiago Alcantara to give the hosts a penalty but Alisson kept out Jorginho's spot-kick.
Past 10 meetings
Chelsea wins: 3
Liverpool wins: 4
Chelsea goals: 13
Liverpool goals: 16
Go for goals in Sunday shootout
There are doubts hanging over both teams going into Sunday's clash.
And yet, despite their slip-ups, it's still very rare to see either side lose.
Chelsea have played 30 matches in all competitions and have lost just three times.
Liverpool, meanwhile, have been defeated just twice in 28 outings.
The market favours the Merseysiders and Planet Sport Bet go 6/5 Liverpool, 2/1 Chelsea and 5/2 The Draw.
The Draw is obviously a runner but this pair have had just one in the last seven at Stamford Bridge and a point is really no good to either.
With both needing to push for the win, I'd rather skip the match market and play goals.
Liverpool somehow failed to score against Leicester but Salah fluffed his lines from the spot, Mane missed a sitter and they let other good chances go too.
Romelu Lukaku is back for Chelsea and looks rejuvenated. He's netted in his last two games and clearly makes the hosts a more potent outfit.
Before the 1-1 with Brighton, Chelsea's previous four games had witnessed a goal count of 4, 5, 6 and 5.
Liverpool surely can't be as profligate and with all their front men back in contention following the return to fitness of Firmino I'll back Over 3.5 goals at 19/10.
Goalscorer bets for Chelsea vs Liverpool
Salah and Lukaku will be the first names on the shortlist and, to be fair, they're available at backable prices.
It's rare to see Salah odds-against these days but he's 5/4 for an anytime goal.
Lukaku is 6/4 although he doesn't possess a good record against Liverpool.
I wouldn't put anyone off but there is better value to be had elsewhere.
Check out the Premier League scorer charts and Diogo Jota is second only to Salah having fired in 10 top-flight goals this season.
He's netted in three of the last four and thrives against big rivals having scored at Old Trafford, Goodison and the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium this term.
Jota is a juicy 19/10 to wheel away in celebration again.
For Chelsea, I like the look of Mason Mount at 16/5.
He's the Blues' top Premier League scorer this season with seven so the price looks big.
Mount scored the winner at Anfield last season and has slotted away four goals in his last seven Premier League games.
That's a healthy strike rate for a player priced up at over 3/1.