Predicting Reds’ Starting XI Ahead of Brentford Clash
Liverpool’s Tactical Shift Ahead of Brentford Clash
After falling to a terrible 3-2 defeat to Toulouse on Thursday, Jurgen Klopp will undoubtedly be looking for a reaction from his players as they return to league action against Brentford on Sunday.
A severe lack of desire, quality and fitness seemed to be on show in the defeat midweek but the Reds will have to be well up for this game against a tricky and well-drilled Brentford side.
Klopp made nine changes to the side that drew 1-1 with Luton Town last weekend ahead of the Toulouse game and similar changes are expected once again for this one.
Today we’re going to be predicting Klopp’s starting XI ahead of Sunday’s game, where a win could see the Reds move level on points with Manchester City at the top of the table.
The Defence: Alisson’s Crucial Comeback for Liverpool’s Backline
Alisson Becker is set to return between the sticks after another poor performance in midweek from Caoimhin Kelleher.
The Irishman has suffered a poor start to the season, leaving Alisson an even more certain starting place in Klopp’s side.
At right-back, Trent Alexander-Arnold is poised to come back into the back four but will need to be much more solid defensively than he was in his cameo on Thursday.
On the opposite side, Joe Gomez and Kostas Tsimikas will be battling it out for a starting spot.
Tsimikas was clearly underperforming both on Thursday and in his cameo from the bench against Luton Town last weekend.
On the other hand, Joe Gomez has arguably been one of Liverpool’s most consistent performers this season. Therefore, I would lean towards the Englishman starting at left-back once again.
At the heart of the defence, the captain Virgil Van Dijk and his partner Ibou Konate are expected to make a comeback to the starting XI.
Verdict: Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Konate, Van Dijk, Gomez
The Midfield: Klopp’s Tough Choices Amidst Limited Options
Klopp is facing limited options in midfield, with both Ryan Gravenberch and Curtis Jones injury doubts and Alexis Mac Allister suspended after picking up five yellow cards this season.
Obviously, Thiago Alcantara and Stefan Bajcetic are still definitely ruled out of this one.
Therefore, despite his poor performance on Thursday, Wataru Endo is expected to receive a rare Premier League start as the holding midfielder.
In front of him, Dominik Szoboszlai is set to rejoin the midfield along with Harvey Elliott.
The last time we saw both Szoboszlai and Elliot start in midfield together was against Brighton, where Klopp seemingly went with more of a 4-4-2 formation with Luis Diaz and Harvey Elliott as wide midfielders.
However, I doubt this will be the case on Sunday due to the selection of forwards that I think Klopp will go with.
Verdict: Endo, Szoboszlai, Elliott
The Attack: Salah Leads the Charge in Liverpool’s Frontline
Finally, I think we’re likely to see three changes to the front line that we saw against Toulouse on Thursday.
Mohamed Salah is set to rejoin the side in the place of Ben Doak on the right-hand side.
Cody Gakpo is also expected to drop back down to the bench after playing the full 90 minutes on Thursday, with Darwin Nunez likely to replace him.
On the left-hand side, Diogo Jota is likely to come back into the lineup in place of Luis Diaz after scoring from the bench midweek.
This would leave Klopp plenty of options from the bench with Gakpo, Diaz and Doak all capable of changing the game.