‘Tantalising…’ – Liverpool journalist intrigued by Reds team news for Atalanta clash

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Jurgen Klopp has made it clear from his Liverpool team selection for tonight’s Europa League quarter-final second leg against Atalanta that he doesn’t think this tie is irretrievable.

The Reds have a mountain to climb after losing 3-0 to Gian Piero Gasperini’s side at Anfield last week, but the German has opted for a strong starting line-up for the clash at the Gewiss Stadium.

One intriguing change in attack sees Cody Gakpo come in for Darwin Nunez, with the Uruguayan and Diogo Jota among the substitutes.

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Reacting to the team news on the Liverpool Echo‘s live matchday blog, Paul Gorst stated: “I am surprised a little bit to see Cody Gakpo start, even though the Netherlands frontman has been in decent form of late. In full fairness, he has scored a decent number of goals in this competition this term. Only Darwin Nunez has more than Gakpo’s four.

“It’s a first start since early February for Trent Alexander-Arnold too. How they will need his creativity from deep tonight. Jota and Nunez in reserve is tantalising.”

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Jota is still waiting for his first Liverpool start in two months, although he’s appeared off the bench in the Reds’ last couple of matches since returning from a knee injury (Transfermarkt).

Nunez drops out after a run of just one goal in six matches but he’s already had a telling impact as a substitute this season, coming on to score twice in the dramatic win at Newcastle in August and also getting the 99th-minute winner away to Nottingham Forest a few weeks ago.

The pair have scored 32 times between them in the current campaign, certainly a nice luxury to have in reserve if we need a goal or two during the second half tonight.

Hopefully the starting front three of Luis Diaz, Gakpo and Mo Salah can do the business and rescue Liverpool’s first-leg deficit, but having Jota and Nunez to call upon off the bench is indeed a tantalising prospect if it’s needed.

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