Benteke and Allen to start, Canos to make debut? – Predicting Liverpool’s XI vs. West Brom

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We take a look at how Liverpool’s starting team could look at West Brom, with another much-changed side to feature.

Another Premier League season comes to an end for the Reds on Sunday as they sign off the campaign with a trip to the Hawthorns.

The meeting with Tony Pulis’ side is the final distraction before the Europa League final showdown, and Jurgen Klopp will be looking to ensure of the perfect send-off before he takes his squad to Basel’s St. Jakob-Park.

Wholesale changes for the last league fixture are nailed on with Klopp stating “we’ll try to find a lineup to win at West Brom.”

With first-choice picks rightly set to be rested ahead of Wednesday’s final, another youthful lineup is likely to feature.

 

Team News

  • Another youthful and rotated side to feature at the Hawthorns
  • Could include Jordan Henderson after captain returned to full training
  • Divock Origi also in contention with Belgian closing in on comeback
  • Danny Ings close to return and could come in for first involvement under Klopp
  • Sergi Canos set to be involved and could be handed Reds debut
  • Danny Ward ruled out meaning Adam Bogdan likely to start in goal
  • Martin Skrtel in line to start in what could be final Reds appearance
  • Skrtel could be partnered by Lucas Leiva
  • Full-backs Connor Randall, Jon Flanagan and Brad Smith all available
  • Kevin Stewart set to return to midfield and could be joined by Joe Allen and Cameron Brannagan
  • Jordon Ibe and Sheyi Ojo in line for wide berths again
  • Christian Benteke likely to lead the line

 

The Reds XI vs. The Baggies

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Friday, May 13, 2016: Liverpool players during a training session at Melwood Training Ground ahead of the UEFA Europa League Final against Seville FC. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

With the need to preserve as many first-choice picks as possible ahead of the Sevilla clash, an experimental lineup must – and will be – named against Pulis’ side.

Despite all closing in on returns, it is unlikely Henderson, Origi or Ings would start, with their best chances of action coming as impact substitutes as they look to boost their hopes of involvement for the final.

With that in mind, Bogdan, Randall, Skrtel, Lucas and Smith should form a rotated defence, with Stewart coming back in a three-man midfield alongside Brannagan and Allen – who ideally would be rested but is needed due to a lack of alternative.

Resuming wide duties, Ibe and Ojo should start in support of Benteke to form the attack, and that would see the Reds look like this come 3pm kickoff time:

west brom line up 4-3-3

Alternatively, Klopp could deploy his preferred 4-2-3-1 set-up, switching some of his players in the process.

Using his favoured formation could hand Canos a chance to make his debut, able to play in his natural right-wing role which would then allow Ibe to move to the central position he played against Watford.

Flanagan could also come in to play at right-back instead of Randall, and those adjustments to both the lineup and setup would see Liverpool’s XI look like this for the final league game:

West Brom line up 4-2-3-1

All the focus is naturally on the looming Europa League final, but first the Reds need to ensure of the perfect send-off by ending the Premier League campaign on a positive note.

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