Eccleston to start against Arsenal tonight?

Football - Birmingham City v Liverpool FA Youth Cup Semi Final First Leg

Young attacker Nathan Eccleston could be in line for a surprise debut for Liverpool in tonight’s Carling Cup clash with Arsenal.

Much of the pre-match build-up has focused on the possibility of midfielder Alberto Aquilani making his debut but the Italian will only be a sub.

The Liverpool Way fanzine suggest academy graduate Eccleston will start the match.

The 18 year-old Manchester born striker was promoted to Melwood this summer and has impressed in reserve team action and is capable of playing on the wing as well as up front.

Also expected to start this evening are fellow youngsters and midfielders Jay Spearing and Damien Plessis – who signed a new contract at Anfield this week. Javier Mascherano is suspended while Lucas Leiva is struggling with flu.

Torres, Gerrard, Johnson and Riera won’t be risked following recent injuries meaning it will be a somewhat weak Liverpool team with the likes of Dossena, Degen, Voronin, Babel and Kyrgiakos starting instead.