It’s been a long wait since our last competitive game and with players returning from Qatar at different periods, both Manchester City and Liverpool will have to put together a patchwork squad for the Carabao Cup fixture.
It has been reported by the Manchester Evening News that Pep Guardiola is set to be without up to 11 players for the fixture: ‘Still to return are Ederson, Laporte, Ruben Dias, Joao Cancelo, Bernardo Silva, winner Julian Alvarez, and the England players Kyle Walker, John Stones, Kalvin Phillips, Phil Foden and Jack Grealish’.
Jurgen Klopp will also be without several members of his squad who have also not yet returned to training, as only Darwin Nunez was eliminated in the group stages and so should be the only one who participated in the World Cup and could play this cup tie.
Both managers will be given the choice of trying to get those who have been out of action for over a month some game time but will also be aware of the hectic fixture schedule ahead and may choose to rest individuals further because of what is to come.
It will certainly be interesting to see what type of starting lineups that both teams select and there should be reason for optimism for the Reds, if we manage to get through to the next round then we would be in a strong position to retain the trophy.
It’s likely this will be used as a final friendly ahead of the Premier League restart but let’s hope that we see an entertaining match that ends in a place being booked for the quarter-finals.