Liverpool will be looking to kick off their new Premier League season with a positive result when they take on Norwich City at Carrow Road on Saturday evening.
A hugely disappointing 2020/21 campaign ended with a five-match winning streak, propelling Jurgen Klopp’s men to a third-placed finish in the final standings.
With key players such as Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez returning to fitness following extended spells on the sidelines, the Reds will be hoping for an improved showing this time around.
In yesterday’s press conference, the Liverpool boss gave an update on his squad’s injury concerns, with only Andy Roberston and Curtis Jones ruled out of action.
“All our players are here. I have the situation I want to have. We have no major injuries apart from Robbo. Curtis is fit again, but it is protocol, and we must respect that,” said Klopp.
With that in mind, here’s how Football Fan Cast expects him to line up his side against Norwich this evening…
There’ll be no surprise in goal as Brazil international Alisson Becker lines up between the sticks for his 101st Premier League appearance.
However, in front of the South American shot-stopper will be a couple of rather unfamiliar faces. Greek left-back Kostas Tsimikas is set to make his first Premier League start for the Reds, while Konate should make his competitive debut for Klopp’s charges.
Van Dijk will make his long-awaited return to competitive first-team action after nine months out with a serious knee injury, and Trent Alexander-Arnold will complete the back four for the Anfield club.
In midfield, Klopp is unlikely to call upon Thiago or Jordan Henderson following their late returns to pre-season training, so the experienced James Milner will partner Fabinho and Naby Keita in the engine room.
The biggest dilemma for the Liverpool boss will be who makes up the front three. Both Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane have had the summer off, so it’ll be between Roberto Firmino and Diogo Jota as to who gets the nod at centre-forward.
We fancy Klopp to axe the £45m-rated Brazilian, who started Liverpool’s last Premier League game of 2020/21, for Jota after a fabulous maiden campaign on Merseyside for the 24-year-old, who netted 13 goals last term.