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2 Liverpool lineup options vs. Brentford – with a possible change of shape

Jurgen Klopp could consider changing his formation for Liverpool’s first-ever trip to Brentford‘s new stadium, with the Reds manager short of options in midfield.

Liverpool are now on a run of seven games unbeaten to start the season, having scored three in each of their last four games – the most recent, a 3-0 thrashing of Norwich.

That League Cup tie saw Klopp make nine changes to his starting lineup, with only Ibrahima Konate and Kostas Tsimikas retained from the 3-0 victory over Crystal Palace three days previous.

Another reshuffle is likely for a first-ever Premier League clash with Brentford, which also brings a first-ever meeting at their new Brentford Community Stadium.

But how could Klopp deploy his side in west London?


Team News

A month-and-a-half into the season and it has been a busy treatment room for Liverpool:


Liverpool’s XI vs. Brentford

NORWICH, ENGLAND - Tuesday, September 21, 2021: Liverpool's Curtis Jones during the Football League Cup 3rd Round match between Norwich City FC and Liverpool FC at Carrow Road. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

With rotation the order of the month during their busy run of seven games in 21 days, Klopp can be expected to make almost wholesale changes once again.

In fact, only one player is likely to keep his place in the side from the 3-0 victory at Carrow Road in midweek:

If Jones is the sole player retained, Liverpool could line up like this:

Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Van Dijk, Robertson; Fabinho, Henderson, Jones; Salah, Mane, Jota

However, given the glut of injuries in midfield with Thiago and Keita joining Harvey Elliott on the sidelines, there is a chance Klopp shifts his formation:

  • Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Van Dijk, and Robertson remain likely back five
  • Fabinho and Henderson could form two-man midfield; Jones and James Milner in reserve
  • Firmino back in to take No. 10 role, with Salah, Mane and Jota alongside him

This may be a riskier setup, but this 4-2-3-1 would allow Liverpool to take to the field like this:

Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Van Dijk, Robertson; Fabinho, Henderson; Salah, Firmino, Mane, Jota

At this stage, it seems likely that Klopp will stick with his trusted 4-3-3 setup, particularly against a side as well-drilled and unpredictable as Brentford.

But there is intrigue in the 4-2-3-1, particularly if Firmino is given license to drop deep and create while Salah, Mane and Jota interchange as the front three.

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