Jurgen Klopp explains Liverpool’s pre-planned changes – with big Endo hint

Liverpool’s 2-0 win over Union SG in the Europa League saw Jurgen Klopp make a number of pre-planned changes, with the trip to Brighton in mind.

The Reds travel to East Sussex just three days after their second group game in Europe, with Klopp make nine changes to his starting lineup on Thursday night.

Alisson and Mohamed Salah were the only players to keep their places, though Darwin Nunez and Trent Alexander-Arnold also came into a strong side.

Klopp’s plan paid off, belatedly, as after a host of chances of Salah and Nunez, Ryan Gravenberch made it 1-0 before the break.

Salah, Nunez and Wataru Endo were brought off at half-time, with Klopp confirming in his post-match press conference that “all three subs were planned.”

That indicates that, as expected with the two forwards, Endo will start in midfield against Brighton alongside Alexis Mac Allister and Dominik Szoboszlai.

And in his interview with TNT Sports, the manager elaborated on his decisions, admitting Liverpool “have to do it slightly differently” with Cody Gakpo and goalscorer Diogo Jota out for the weekend.

“If we can do it, I think we should try it,” he said of his planned substitutions.

“We have a really short time now, turnaround, for Brighton. Obviously last year we were awful there, so we have to do better.

“It’s difficult. I hate thinking about the game after the game [we’re preparing for], but in these quick turnarounds, sometimes we have to.

“We have the problem, two of our strikers not available for the next game, so we have to do it slightly differently.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Thursday, October 5, 2023: Liverpool's Trent Alexander-Arnold is substituted during the UEFA Europa League Group E matchday 2 game between Liverpool FC and Union SG at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

“Tonight it went alright, worked out.”

Along with Salah, Nunez and Endo at half-time, Alexander-Arnold came off with 79 minutes played in his first start since a hamstring injury.

Gravenberch for Szoboszlai was the other alteration late on, though the Dutchman seemingly won’t be starting at the AMEX.