BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS, USA - Saturday, July 20, 2019: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp during an open training session at Fenway Park ahead of a friendly against Seville on day five of the club's pre-season tour of America. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Liverpool cut down to 24-man training squad as Community Shield draws closer

Liverpool have sent five youngsters back to Merseyside as the first-team training camp in Evian continues this week, ahead of Sunday’s Community Shield tie.

The Reds take on Man City at Wembley this weekend, in the campaign’s competitive opener.

Though the importance of the game is questionable, with the Community Shield widely regarded as little more than a high-profile friendly, Jurgen Klopp and his side will be eager to lift the trophy.

Preparations improved on Wednesday night with a 3-1 win over Lyon in Geneva, midway through a week-long stay in Evian to close off the summer.

Sepp van den Berg, Ki-Jana Hoever, Yasser Larouci, Adam Lewis and Bobby Duncan all featured in that clash, but have now all returned home as Klopp streamlines his group.

The Liverpool Echo report that “it was always the intention to trim [the] numbers,” and the Reds are now left with a 24-man squad ahead of the trip to north London.

Realistically none of that quintet will be considered to feature against City, and are more likely to play in the EFL Trophy opener against Oldham Athletic on August 7.

Liverpool’s Training Squad for Community Shield

SOUTH BEND, INDIANA, USA - Thursday, July 18, 2019: Liverpool's Trent Alexander-Arnold during a training session ahead of the friendly match against Borussia Dortmund at the Notre Dame Stadium on day three of the club's pre-season tour of America. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Goalkeepers: Alisson, Mignolet, Ojrzynski, Lonergan

Defenders: Alexander-Arnold, Gomez, Matip, Lovren, Van Dijk, Robertson

Midfielders: Fabinho, Henderson, Milner, Wijnaldum, Keita, Lallana, Oxlade-Chamberlain

Forwards: Firmino, Salah, Origi, Shaqiri, Brewster, Wilson, Elliott

This would also indicate that, at this stage, Klopp does not see either Hoever, Larouci or Lewis as second choice at right- or left-back respectively.

Instead, Joe Gomez is likely to remain backup to Trent Alexander-Arnold at right-back, while James Milner is able to cover Andy Robertson on the opposite flank.

Furthermore, the depth available to Klopp at centre-back allows him to provide Van den Berg and Hoever further time to develop out of the first team.

Duncan’s departure comes after a quiet but impressive pre-season which saw him play 129 minutes over five games, scoring once and assisting once, but his exit was always to be expected.

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND - Wednesday, July 31, 2019: Liverpool's Harvey Elliott during a pre-season friendly match between Liverpool FC and Olympique Lyonnais at Stade de Genève. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Interestingly, however, Harvey Elliott remains with the squad, after making two strong cameos against Napoli and Lyon so far.

Sadio Mane is still absent, and Klopp requires further options in attack, and Elliott is clearly already trusted having made his Premier League debut for Fulham at just 16.

After the clash with Oldham next Wednesday, the under-23s begin their Premier League 2 campaign against Tottenham on the Saturday, while the under-18s play Blackburn earlier the same day.