Gomez and Robertson to return or same Reds XI? – Liverpool’s lineup options vs. Arsenal

26 August 2017

Should Jurgen Klopp keep faith with a winning team or introduce fresh legs to Liverpool’s starting lineup for Sunday’s showdown against Arsenal?


The Reds look to continue a promising start to the campaign by claiming a fourth straight win, this time against Arsene Wenger’s men.

Klopp’s Reds are brimming with confidence after sealing Champions League qualification, and will be determined to produce another big-game success in their first heavyweight Premier League clash.

After making five changes to the team in midweek and seeing those restored impress, Klopp is facing a familiar selection dilemma as Liverpool look to reach the international break unbeaten.

Indeed, the boss must again decide whether to stick with the XI which beat Hoffenheim a second time, or reintroduce those who impressed in the victory over Crystal Palace when called upon.

 

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Liverpool’s XI vs. the Gunners

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Wednesday, August 23, 2017: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp reacts after TSG 1899 Hoffenheim's first goal during the UEFA Champions League Play-Off 2nd Leg match between Liverpool and TSG 1899 Hoffenheim at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

After seeing his currently preferred XI produce a stunning display to blitz Hoffenheim, Klopp has little reason to change a winning team—especially with Alexander-Arnold and Can set to be fit.

The boss named the same side two games in a row for league and European exploits in the first week of the season, fielding the exact side that opened at Watford for the play-off first-leg victory in Germany.

Klopp could follow that route again—albeit in reverse—and trust what is arguably the Reds’ strongest lineup at this stage to produce a repeat of Wednesday night’s spectacular showing.

This would allow what is seemingly Klopp’s first-choice side to continue building rhythm in performance and, crucially, confidence and momentum going into the international break.

If so, Liverpool’s XI would look like this against the Gunners:

The Reds produced a huge collective effort in midweek, playing at an unbelievable tempo and intensity which Hoffenheim simply could not handle.

Such an effort will have been a big physical test for those involved, and with this in mind, Klopp could rotate in search of a fresh display with another high-speed showing needed.

In fact, it’s arguably essential that fresh legs are introduced considering Arsenal have enjoyed a full week without a fixture to prepare for Sunday’s clash.

Restoring some of those relegated to the bench in midweek would therefore be a wise move, and there are plenty of options available to inject the team in all departments.

Alterations should only come in defence and midfield though, with the attacking trio picking itself currently in the lethal combination of Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino.

At the back, Robertson should be handed a chance to build on his impressive debut, while Gomez should replace Alexander-Arnold given the 18-year-old has been struggling with a dead leg.

Similar caution could also be taken with Can, who it’s vital is kept fit, and Wednesday’s two-goal hero could make way for Milner, who Klopp described as “like a new transfer” following his impressive midfield displays.

Making these suggested three changes would see the Reds start like this at Anfield:

Liverpool have made a pleasing start to the season both domestically and in Europe, and Klopp’s side must keep that positive momentum building with victory over the Gunners at Anfield.

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