Liverpool lineup vs. Brighton – with Jurgen Klopp facing midfield decision

Liverpool travel to Brighton on Sunday knowing there must be a huge improvement on the performance that saw them beaten 3-0 by the Seagulls a fortnight ago.

It’s a defeat Klopp continues to refer to as “the worst game he ever saw” from one of his teams.

On the day, the Liverpool boss experimented with a tweak to his usual 4-3-3 formation, which saw Thiago deployed in a more attacking role, but it was a move that backfired.

Since then, the Reds have gone back to basics, with an emphasis on defensive solidity and more organisation across the pitch.

Stefan Bajcetic and Naby Keita have come into the side ahead of Fabinho and Jordan Henderson, and Klopp must now decide whether to stick with the same midfield trio for the third match running.

Here, we look at two potential ways the Reds could line up at the Amex on Sunday.


Team news

From Klopp’s pre-Brighton press conference on Friday, we know the following:


Liverpool’s XI vs. Brighton

Liverpool’s Stefan Bajcetic, watched by manager Jurgen Klopp, warms up prior to the Emirates FA Cup third-round replay match at Molineux Picture date: Tuesday January 17, 2023.

Having kept two clean sheets in their last two matches, there’s every chance Klopp won’t want to make too many changes to his XI this weekend.

Trent Alexander-Arnold and Darwin Nunez are both in contention to return to the starting lineup, and with plenty of time between matches this month, there’s a possibility they could be the only alterations Klopp goes with.

Nunez may be most likely to slot in on the left side of the attack, with Klopp impressed with Cody Gakpo‘s defensive work in a central position.

If the boss decides to stick with a similar team, the Reds could line up as follows:

If those are the changes Klopp makes, the team would look like this:

Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Konate, Gomez, Robertson; Bajcetic, Keita, Thiago; Salah, Nunez, Gakpo

However, with the likes of Joel Matip, Fabinho and Henderson yet to make a start since that defeat at Brighton, there is a chance Klopp will feel they’re in need of some game time.

The return of Nunez does also give Klopp the opportunity to deploy Gakpo on the left side of the attack, where he was so impressive for PSV.

Here’s another way the Reds could line up:

  • Alexander-Arnold & Matip to replace Milner & Gomez
  • Fabinho & Henderson in for Bajcetic & Keita
  • Nunez in for Elliott, with Gakpo moved to the left

That would see Liverpool line up as follows:

Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Konate, Robertson; Fabinho, Henderson, Thiago, Salah, Gakpo, Nunez

Klopp and his Liverpool team will be fully aware that they must deliver a much more cohesive performance than a fortnight ago if they’re to stand any chance of progressing to the fifth round.

The likes of Milner, Kostas Tsimikas, Curtis Jones, Elliott and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will all be hoping for game time, but with another week until the Reds’ next clash against Wolves, Klopp is unlikely to make wholesale changes.