With Jordan Henderson, Jon Flanagan, Roberto Firmino, Christian Benteke, Danny Ings, Joe Gomez, Jordan Rossiter and Daniel Sturridge out (that’s eight players), Jurgen Klopp has few options for his first game in charge at Anfield.
His only real selection dilemma lies with the goalkeeper and central defence – depending on whether he goes with his first-choice or rotates Mignolet/Skrtel/Sakho for Bogdan/Toure/Lovren.
We’ve included our predicted side and thoughts as to why below:
GK) Simon Mignolet
Adam Bogdan will be clucking for a game, but surely the new manager will want to pick his best defensive back-line and hone it. This back five kept a clean-sheet versus Tottenham, and while it’d be nice to rest the fullbacks, injuries to Joe Gomez and Jon Flanagan make it pretty difficult.
DR) Nathaniel Clyne
Clyne’s the only option really, unless Klopp decides to use Emre Can at right-back. That will surely only happen if the summer signing from Southampton picks up an injury, however.
DL) Alberto Moreno
Jose Enrique didn’t make the bench versus Spurs, so we can’t imagine he’ll be brought back into the fold yet.
DC) Martin Skrtel
Skrtel and Sakho haven’t had much practice together in a flat back-four this season due to Rodgers originally favouring Dejan Lovren, and only picking Sakho in the wing-back tactic. So it makes sense for Skrtel and Sakho to continue, looking for a consecutive clean-sheet.
DC) Mamadou Sakho
Liverpool’s best defender this season by a country mile, Sakho should be the first centre-back on the team-sheet – and Klopp should build his back-four around the powerful 25-year-old.