Unchanged Reds or 2 changes? – Predicting Liverpool’s lineup vs. Burnley

30 August 2019

Liverpool’s excellent performance against Arsenal could see Jurgen Klopp name an unchanged lineup when the Reds face Burnley on Saturday evening.


Klopp restored his side to full-strength against the Gunners and was rewarded with the best display of the season so far as the Reds eased to victory.

It would be fair to think that Klopp will trust the same team to deliver again – especially given the fact that the Reds have enjoyed another full week to recover, train and prepare.

An entirely different challenge awaits against Sean Dyche’s side though, and that could see the German make changes for what will be a battle at Turf Moor.

“It’s not like planning a holiday when you go to Burnley,” acknowledged the boss in his pre-match press conference. “It’s planning for the hardest work and that’s we’ll be ready for.”

Here is how we think Liverpool’s starting XI could look come Saturday 5.30pm kick-off time.

 

Unchanged Squad Available

There is still no change with the current injury situation, meaning Alisson, Naby Keita and long-term absentee Nathaniel Clyne are still missing.

An unchanged squad is therefore at Klopp’s disposal.

And that could be the theme of the German’s selection, with Klopp having stated in his press conference that “this isn’t the moment for a lot of changes.”

Therefore all 11 Reds who started the win over the Gunners look strongly placed to keep their places.

There are options available in all areas for changes should Klopp see fit.

Joe Gomez is the main contender to come into the defence, at either centre-back or right-back.

In midfield, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will hope for another chance to shine, while James Milner and Adam Lallana are further options to consider.

Divock Origi and little-seen Xherdan Shaqiri offer the main attacking alternatives, but reality is that both will be preparing for an afternoon on the bench.

 

Liverpool’s XI vs. The Clarets

NEW YORK, NEW YORK, USA - Wednesday, July 24, 2019: Liverpool's Georginio Wijnaldum celebrates scoring the second goal with team-mate James Milner (R) during a friendly match between Liverpool FC and Sporting Clube de Portugal at the Yankee Stadium on day nine of the club's pre-season tour of America. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

After such a great result and performance against Arsenal, it’s difficult to see where and even why Klopp would make changes.

When you also consider Klopp’s words and that the Reds have enjoyed another full week of precious training time, an unchanged lineup featuring makes even more sense.

It wouldn’t at all be a surprise therefore to see those who delivered the performance of the season so far handed the chance to produce the goods again.

That would mean Trent Alexander-Arnold, Joel Matip, Virgil van Dijk and Andy Robertson protect Adrian once more.

Fabinho would anchor the midfield, with Jordan Henderson and Gini Wijnaldum in the advanced roles supporting the three amigos Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino.

Adrian; Trent, Matip, Van Dijk, Robertson; Fabinho, Henderson, Wijnaldum; Salah, Mane, Firmino


While the above XI delivered emphatically against Arsenal, we all know that facing Burnley at Turf Moor presents a completely different test.

A tough, physical battle awaits against a team who will play direct football and attempt to turn the game into a scrap to prevent the Reds finding rhythm.

So Klopp – who said he is considering “a couple of really small changes” – could adapt his team slightly to cater for the inevitable war, adding extra robustness to the side.

One such change could see Gomez brought in at right-back for Alexander-Arnold to provide more of a defensive presence on return to the scene of his unfortunate injury last season.

Another switch could come in midfield.

It would be nice to see Oxlade-Chamberlain enter to provide attacking force from the middle of the park, but Klopp may take caution with him in what will be a hard-fought contest.

The more likely switch may be Milner replacing Wijnaldum, with Klopp having regularly called upon the vice-captain’s battling spirit and reliability in fixtures of this type.

Adrian; Gomez, Matip, Van Dijk, Robertson; Fabinho, Henderson, Oxlade-Chamberlain; Salah, Mane, Firmino


The first lineup is currently Liverpool’s strongest available and sticking with that in-form XI to take the game to the home side would be most welcome.

Even if changes are made, the Reds still boast more than enough quality to claim another three points and ensure the 100 per-cent winning start is maintained going into the international break.

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