Liverpool lineups vs. Bournemouth – Bajcetic to return & Gakpo or Jota?

It’s a Liverpool side charging towards the top four meeting bottom-of-the-pile Bournemouth, but does Jurgen Klopp stick with a winning formula or make changes?

The feel-good factor has been pumping through the club over the last five days after tearing into Man United with seven unanswered goals, but they cannot take the result for granted.

While the Cherries may sit at the bottom of the table with 21 points, they cannot be underestimated and if anyone ought to know that, it’s Liverpool.

Only 12 points from a possible 36 have been secured away from Anfield this season and the Reds need to ensure they’re quick off the mark despite the early kick-off time.

Here is how the manager could set up his side on the south coast.


Team News

The top line for the Reds is that there are no new injury concerns heading into the weekend, but there were updates for three absentees:

  • Luis Diaz back after international break, aim is full training next week
  • Joe Gomez ‘might train’ start of coming week, back after internationals
  • Thiago “we will see” – timeline of return still uncertain


Liverpool’s XI vs. Bournemouth

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, March 5, 2023: Liverpool players line-up before the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Manchester United FC at Anfield. (L-R) captain Jordan Henderson, goalkeeper Alisson Becker, Fabio Henrique Tavares 'Fabinho', Ibrahima Konaté, Andy Robertson, Virgil van Dijk, Harvey Elliott, Cody Gakpo, Darwin Núñez, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Mohamed Salah. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

After putting seven goals beyond Man United six days prior to kickoff at the Vitality Stadium, it would not be a surprise to see Klopp stick to his winning formula.

Liverpool have five league clean sheets in succession and have scored 13 goals without reply in that time, momentum is building and perhaps consistency may be sought after.

After the win over United, Klopp acknowledged Liverpool “need consistency” and with a four-day break to follow before the trip to Real Madrid, the manager will not feel pressured into changes:

  • Backline unchanged, Konate’s third successive start after injury
  • Elliott keeps place ahead of Bajcetic; Henderson and Fabinho alongside
  • Salah, Nunez and Gakpo to continue attacking partnership

This is how the Reds would then line up:

Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Konate, Van Dijk, Robertson; Fabinho, Elliott, Henderson; Salah, Nunez, Gakpo

On the other hand, Klopp is not without his options and Diogo Jota and Stefan Bajcetic will be putting their hand up for selection.

Bajcetic has proven to be one of the shining lights of the season and after seven starts in a row, he’s since come off the bench in two of the last three.

At 18, his minutes do need to be carefully managed but here, he could take over from Jordan Henderson – who has benefited from recent rotation.

There will be arguments for more changes, including the inclusion of Roberto Firmino, with a flicker of hope still remaining in the Champions League tie, but the top four is on the minds of many:

  • Bajcetic replaces Henderson, Fabinho and Elliott retained
  • Jota to take over from Gakpo

With those tweaks, Liverpool would shape up as follows:

Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Konate, Van Dijk, Robertson; Fabinho, Elliott, Bajcetic; Salah, Jota, Nunez

On paper, Liverpool should be more than capable of getting the job done at Bournemouth, but we know that it hasn’t quite played out that way this season.

But with confidence building after four wins from the last five league games, Liverpool have the strength to return to Merseyside with all three points irrespective of Klopp’s XI.

Let’s get the weekend off to the perfect start please, Reds!