Liverpool v Leicester – The EFL Cup 3rd Round Preview

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Liverpool v Leicester – The EFL Cup 3rd Round Preview

After a successful weekend for Liverpool FC and a 3-1 win against West Ham, attentions now turn to the EFL Cup, where a 3rd round tie has pitted the reds against high flying Championship side, Leicester City. The Foxes saw off both Burton and Tranmere (both 0-2) on their travels, as they completed the first two rounds of the cup without much trouble. Jürgen Klopp brings his side into the tournament at the 3rd round stage and will be delighted to have secured a home tie.

 

 

The Leicester Availability

In terms of availability, the entire squad is at the disposal of new manager, Enzo Maresca. The start to their Championship season has been near perfect, after securing 21 points from their seven wins and a draw. The 2015/16 Premier League winners have yet to taste defeat in any competition so far this season, therefore, will be arriving on Merseyside full of confidence. In fact, the last time this side suffered a loss was during pre-season, as Liverpool beat them 4-0 at the Singapore National Stadium.

Their previous starting line-up is listed below, which may incorporate the changes relative to how the manager views the competition. Jamie Vardy will be the man to watch, whereas Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall could catch the eye, especially after some Anfield links in the summer just gone. James Justin, Kelechi Iheanacho, Hamza Choudhury, Marc Albrighton, and former LFC player, Conor Coady, will all be hoping to start this game, after only making the bench at the weekend.

 

The Liverpool Availability

The reds heavy fixture schedule means that rotation will once again be in effect for this midweek cup game. Trent Alexander Arnold may make the bench, as he continues his recovery from a hamstring injury, whereas Thiago Alcântara and his fitness remains widely unknown. I can see a full group turnover on Wednesday evening, one which will allow Ibou to lead the side and get vital minutes in a first team shirt. The midfield that started in Austria will probably get another start, whilst the attack should see those that did not start on Sunday, come into the first eleven.

Below is the team I believe may start this game.

Caoimhin Kelleher

Stefan Bajčetić

Ibrahima Konaté (c)

Jarell Quansah

Kostas Tsimikas

Wataru Endō

Harvey Elliott

Ryan Gravenberch

Ben Doak

Diogo Jota

Cody Gakpo


How Will This Contest Play Out

If Leicester choose to put out a strong starting eleven, this could make for a very entertaining contest. Despite a desire for silverware, Klopp will name a team that is only geared towards their visit to Tottenham on Saturday evening. Mass changes will entail and elite players will only be ushered from the bench if the score line requires it. The likes of Mohamed Salah, Darwin Núñez, Luis Díaz, and Dominik Szoboszlai, will not start this game, yet may well have to be called upon at some point. I would still favour a home win here, as the visitors hectic schedule means players will inevitably fatigue within a squad that is not heavily rotated thus far. The likes of Diogo Jota, Cody Gakpo, and the impressive Ryan Gravenberch, should overcome Leicester and progress into the next round.

 

 

Player to watch – Ryan Gravenberch

Score Prediction;

Liverpool 2 – 1 Leicester

 

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