Jurgen Klopp said there would be plenty of short, friendly matches in the nine days leading up to Liverpool v Manchester United on January 17.
Last night, the Reds beat Aston Villa (but essentially Aston Villa U23s) 4-1, with the introduction of Thiago and Xherdan Shaqiri helping to change the game in our favour in the second-half.
At times though, fans were collectively shaking their head at the lack of imagination on show – with our play in the opening 45 minutes utterly predictable – just as it was versus West Brom, Newcastle and Southampton.
“We have a lot of players with no rhythm, so we will do a lot of 11 vs. 11 situations because that’s the most important thing for football players that we couldn’t give them too often,” Klopp told BT Sport post-match.
“So now we have the time and we will use it for that, yes.”
We hope in the run-up to the mouthwatering, top of the table clash, Joel Matip can regain full fitness and Naby Keita can do the same.
Matip’s the priority though, as Rhys Williams or Nat Phillips could have a very hard time against Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial.
Ideally, Klopp will be able to start a team that looks like this against the Red Devils: Alisson; Trent, Robbo, Matip, Fabinho; Thiago, Hendo, Gini; Salah, Mane, Firmino.