Liverpool’s final two pre-season fixtures are to be played just over 26 hours apart, with Man City to precede the visit of Strasbourg at Anfield, and we already have a lineup hint or two.
After making the journey to Thailand, Singapore, Germany and Austria this month, the Reds are in the final stages of their pre-season schedule with just two games remaining.
“If you win it, it’s a very important competition and if you lose it, then it becomes less important,” Klopp told the press.
The teamsheet at the King Power looks all but settled, with those not in the XI to then add to their minutes the following day against the Ligue 1 side at Anfield (7.30pm).
So, how will Klopp manage his squad for two games in two days?
After a week in Austria, the Reds return to Liverpool with mixed injury news ahead of the double-header over the weekend:
- Alisson is not fit “for the weekend”; will be back for opener at Fulham
- Jota’s recovery will still “take a while”, Tsimikas picked up knock in Austria
- Oxlade-Chamberlain and Kelleher remain sidelined with muscle injuries
- “All of them will play the first time 90 minutes” vs. City, Klopp has said
Liverpool XI vs. Man City
Klopp’s starting XI to meet Salzburg earlier in the week came as a surprise, but his changes at the hour mark hinted at what to expect against Man City.
- Adrian continues in goal in the absence of Alisson
- Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Van Dijk and Robertson make up the back four
- Henderson starts in midfield ahead of Keita, next to Fabinho and Thiago
- Salah joined by Diaz and Firmino in attack
This would have the Reds lining up like this in the Community Shield:
Liverpool XI vs. Strasbourg
With minutes still needing to be injected into the wider squad after a condensed pre-season, Strasbourg’s visit offers the perfect opportunity for those left out against Man City.
Klopp will not be short on options to make up his XI at Anfield and it’s expected to heavily feature those who started in Salzburg in mid-week.
- Davies handed first Anfield appearance in goal
- Mabaya, Konate, Gomez and Milner in defence, if Tsimikas is fit will take spot of vice-captain
- Bajcetic’s impressive pre-season to continue alongside Keita and Jones
- Carvalho joined in attack by Elliott and Nunez
Liverpool would then line up as follows against Strasbourg:
Davies; Mabaya, Konate, Gomez, Milner; Bajcetic, Keita, Jones; Elliott, Carvalho, Nunez
There are options aplenty for Klopp over the weekend but his XI against Man City looks a settled one and that helps with what we can then expect to see just 26 hours later.
It will be a weekend which will see the players pushed to the 90-minute mark with these two fixtures coming less than a week before Liverpool’s Premier League season starts at Craven Cottage.