Predicting Liverpool’s 2018/19 season – top scorer, player of year, best signing and more

As Liverpool prepare to launch themselves into another new season, how do This is Anfield’s writers think their campaign will pan out?


The Reds enjoyed an excellent pre-season and look primed for an assault on the Premier League title following a productive summer of transfer business.

Jurgen Klopp has assembled arguably Liverpool’s strongest squad for 30 years, which should allow them to thrive across four competitions.

With lots of questions up in the air ahead of the new season, we asked This Is Anfield’s writers for their LFC-specific predictions for 2018/19.

 

Matt Ladson

Predicted finish: 1st

Top Goalscorer: Mo Salah

Player of the Year: Naby Keita

BLACKBURN, ENGLAND - Thursday, July 19, 2018: Liverpool's new signing Naby Keita during a preseason friendly match between Blackburn Rovers FC and Liverpool FC at Ewood Park. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Best New Signing: Keita

Flop of the Season: Divock Origi or Dominic Solanke if either of them hang around.

Best XI: (4-3-3) Alisson, Trent, Lovren, Van Dijk, Robertson, Fabinho, Henderson, Keita, Salah, Firmino, Mane

This season I’d be happy with a trophy. Any trophy, but ideally the title please.


Jack Lusby

Predicted finish: 1st

Top Goalscorer: Mo Salah

Player of the Year: Naby Keita

Best New Signing: Keita

Flop of the Season: Dominic Solanke

Liverpool's Mohamed Salah (left) celebrates scoring his sides third goak of the match with team mates during the pre-season friendly match at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin. ( Niall Carson/PA Wire/PA Images)

Best XI: Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, Van Dijk, Robertson, Fabinho, Keita, Wijnaldum, Salah, Mane, Firmino

This season I’d be happy with winning the league!


Henry Jackson

Predicted finish: 2nd

Top Goalscorer: Mo Salah

Player of the Year: Salah

Best New Signing: Naby Keita

Flop of the Season: Joel Matip

Best XI: (4-3-3) Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, Van Dijk, Robertson, Fabinho, Henderson, Keita, Mane, Salah, Firmino

ANN ARBOR, USA - Friday, July 27, 2018: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp speaks to his players before a training session ahead of the preseason International Champions Cup match between Manchester United FC and Liverpool FC at the Michigan Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

This season I’d be happy with a major title push – still being in contention in April – and a trophy of some kind.

The wait for silverware would be a massive monkey off Klopp’s back.


James Nalton

Predicted finish: 2nd

Top Goalscorer: Roberto Firmino

Player of the Year: Firmino

DUBLIN, REPUBLIC OF IRELAND - Saturday, August 4, 2018: Liverpool's Roberto Firmino and Napoli's Simone Verdi during the preseason friendly match between SSC Napoli and Liverpool FC at Landsdowne Road. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Best New Signing: Naby Keita

Flop of the Season: Nobody

Best XI: Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, Van Dijk, Robertson, Fabinho, Keita, Wijnaldum, Salah, Mane, Firmino

This season I’d be happy with a proper title challenge where there is the chance to win it right until the end.

If they don’t win that then they need a trophy from elsewhere. Liverpool are a bit behind Arsenal and Man United in terms of FA Cup wins, so one of those.


Joanna Durkin

Predicted finish: 2nd

Top Goalscorer: Mo Salah

Player of the Year: Sadio Mane

Best New Signing: Naby Keita

Flop of the Season: Joel Matip

Best XI: Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, Van Dijk, Robertson, Henderson, Fabinho, Keita, Salah, Firmino, Mane

ANN ARBOR, USA - Saturday, July 28, 2018: Liverpool's Sadio Mane (right) celebrates scoring the first goal with team-mates during the preseason International Champions Cup match between Manchester United and Liverpool FC at the Michigan Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

This season I’d be happy with a league finish inside the top three and a piece of silverware to go along with it. Our squad is certainly capable of it, if not more.


Joel Rabinowitz

Predicted finish: Champions

Top Goalscorer: Mo Salah

Player of the Year: Salah

Best New Signing: Naby Keita

BLACKBURN, ENGLAND - Thursday, July 19, 2018: Liverpool's Naby Keita and Virgil van Dijk share a joke after a preseason friendly match between Blackburn Rovers FC and Liverpool FC at Ewood Park. Liverpool won 2-0. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Flop of the Season: Joel Matip

Best XI: Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, Van Dijk, Robertson, Fabinho, Henderson, Keita, Salah, Firmino, Mane

This season I’d be happy with a genuine title challenge, minimum top-three finish, a domestic trophy and progression to the Champions League quarter-finals at least.


Steven Scragg

Predicted finish: Champions. Let’s be bold.

Top Goalscorer: Mo Salah

Player of the Year: Fabinho. A title win built upon the ‘New Souness’.

Best New Signing: Alisson

DUBLIN, REPUBLIC OF IRELAND - Saturday, August 4, 2018: Liverpool's new signing goalkeeper Alisson Becker during the preseason friendly match between SSC Napoli and Liverpool FC at Landsdowne Road. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Flop of the Season: Gini Wijnaldum

Best XI: Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, Van Dijk, Robertson, Fabinho, Henderson, Keita, Salah, Firmino, Mane.

This season I’d be happy with nothing less than the title.


Aaron Cutler

Predicted finish: 3rd

Top Goalscorer: Mo Salah

Player of the Year: Sadio Mane

Best New Signing: Naby Keita

Flop of the Season:Best XI: Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, Van Dijk, Robertson, Keita, Henderson, Lallana, Salah, Firmino, Mane

KIEV, UKRAINE - Saturday, May 26, 2018: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp looks dejected as his side lose during the UEFA Champions League Final match between Real Madrid CF and Liverpool FC at the NSC Olimpiyskiy. Real Madrid won 3-1. (Pic by Peter Powell/Propaganda)

This season I’d be happy with a sustained title challenge and silverware.


Alex Malone

Predicted finish: 1st

Top Goalscorer: Mo Salah

Player of the Year: Naby Keita

Best New Signing: Keita

Flop of the Season: Nathaniel Clyne. I don’t think he will displace Trent Alexander-Arnold, and in the games he does play, his forward play will continue to disappoint.

Best XI: Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, Van Dijk, Robertson, Fabinho, Keita, Shaqiri, Mane, Salah, Firmino

ANN ARBOR, USA - Saturday, July 28, 2018: Liverpool's new signing Xherdan Shaqiri scores the fourth goal during the preseason International Champions Cup match between Manchester United and Liverpool FC at the Michigan Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

I don’t think Dejan Lovren is the long-term answer as the first-choice partner for Virgil van Dijk, but as it stands, Joe Gomez is not (yet) experienced enough to displace him, Joel Matip is unreliable injury-wise and Ragnar Klavan is back-up only.

This season I’d be happy with a minimum top-two finish, a trophy and another deep run in the Champions League.

We have the squad to achieve this now. I think third or fourth would be disappointing given Chelsea and Arsenal have changed managers, Tottenham have signed nobody and Jose Mourinho is already in self-destruct mode.


Karl Matchett

Predicted finish: 1st

Top Goalscorer: Salah, as he’ll get most chances.

Player of the Year: Mane. Playmaking duties to increase his importance and more goals to come too.

NEW JERSEY, USA - Wednesday, July 25, 2018: Liverpool's Sadio Mane during a preseason International Champions Cup match between Manchester City FC and Liverpool FC at the Met Life Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Best New Signing: Keita

Flop of the Season: Adam Lallana. Play slows down too much when he’s on the ball to maintain the rhythm that the usual starters have.

When the second string come in, he isn’t a difference-maker in the way others can be.

Best XI: Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, Van Dijk, Robertson, Fabinho, Keita, Henderson, Mane, Salah, Firmino.

This season I’d be happy with first place, or within half a dozen points. It’s a lot of ground to make up in one season.

If not the league, a trophy elsewhere.

 

* Click here to see how right or wrong we predicted things a year ago.

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