Bangkok, Thailand is the backdrop for the latest meeting between Liverpool and Man United in what is to be a valuable 90 minutes as the Reds build up to the season ahead.
This is the first of six games prior to the Premier League opener, and with a handful of senior players having only just reunited with the squad, Klopp is likely to field a varied group of players.
It’s very early days for the squad and their fitness but it will be intriguing to see how Liverpool take to the field against United and the system that is deployed.
Two teams will be named, one for each half, and with a host of the top names only returning to training on Sunday evening, the two lineups will be feature a lot of ‘new’ names for most supporters.
Here are two possible XIs for the Reds for the Tuesday kickoff (2pm BST).
Any team news?
- A 37-man travelling squad was named for tour of Far East
- Klopp will “try to give [returning international] a few minutes”
- Jota says game is “probably too soon” after hamstring injury with Portugal
The 37-man Liverpool squad
Goalkeepers: Adrian, Davies, Mrozek
Defenders: Matip, Gomez, Phillips, R. Williams, Van den Berg, Mabaya, Chambers, Norris
Midfielders: Henderson, Milner, Elliott, Bajcetic, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Morton, Clarkson, Frauendorf, Hill
Forwards: Diaz, Firmino, Carvalho, Clark
Possible XIs vs. Man United
“We brought here 37 players, so we have all generations here and we have to use all of them,” Klopp said of his travelling group upon landing in Thailand.
For many, it is the second week of pre-season and one would expect those to have returned to the AXA Training Centre on July 4 to feature heavily.
This will give an opportunity to the young players in the squad and those on the fringe of Klopp’s plans as they all continue to build their fitness and try to catch the eye.
With a handful of seniors not to be straight into the fold, it leaves plenty of exciting options but also what could be an interesting combination of players:
- Adrian to start in goal with Gomez and Phillips ahead in defence
- Isaac Mabaya, 17, and Luke Chambers, 18, get their chance at full-back
- Familiar faces of Henderson and Elliott in midfield, along with Morton
- Carvalho gets his debut on the right of the attack
- And Firmino and Diaz to complement the exciting forward line
This would see the Reds line up like this:
Adrian; Mabaya, Gomez, Phillips, Chambers; Henderson, Elliott, Morton; Carvalho, Firmino, Diaz
Alternatively, the average age of the side could be taken down a notch with a handful of exciting youth prospects on show with this outfield ten during Monday’s training session.
With those who made a delayed start to pre-season likely to only feature off the bench at the end of proceedings, it presents the chance for members of the academy to play.
But while this team could be a more youthful one, only two have never made an appearance for the first team, Stefan Bajcetic and Bobby Clark – both of whom have been namechecked previously by Pepijn Lijnders.
- Alisson comes back into the fold after his extended break
- Frauendorf slots in at right-back, Tsimikas adding experience on the left
- Rhys Williams partners Matip at centre-back
- Bajcetic gets his chance in midfield next to Milner and Clarkson
- Ox helps out in attack next to Jones and young Red Clark
The Reds would then shape up like this:
Alisson; Frauendorf, Williams, Matip, Tsimikas; Bajcetic, Milner, Clarkson; Oxlade-Chamberlain, Clark, Jones
At this stage of the summer, it really is a guessing game as to how Klopp is to manage the minutes of his players and then create as balanced of an XI as possible.
But the end of the game against Man United could see more familiar faces take to the field, with some of those who were late to return to be in line for 10-15 minutes of action.
New record signing Darwin Nunez only had his first training session on Sunday night so was always unlikely to feature, but some blisters in training on Monday makes him even less likely to feature for this one.