Counting towards the new season
Liverpool kick off their new Premier League season on Saturday night, traveling to Carrow Road to face newly promoted Norwich City. Jurgen Klopp’s team will be looking to improve on their third place last season, but with the return of defensive options Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez, they are well placed to do so.
The Merseyside squad, however, are far from full force heading into the season opener, with the improved duo still not fully fit and left-back Andy Robertson sustaining a potentially serious injury in the preseason.
I told Andy Robertson that I would be out for “weeks instead of months” with ankle ligament damage, which feels like positive news given how bad that injury initially looked yesterday.https://t.co/fMzWLwuxwC
– James Pearce (@JamesPearceLFC) August 9, 2021
As a result, Greek full-back Kostas Tsimikas is likely to replace the Scotsman, and Tsimikas has impressed during the preseason.
Midfield places at stake
Later on, however, the venues are supposedly up for grabs.
According to The Athletic [Via Anfield Watch], Fabinho and Naby Keita are set to fill two of the midfield spots this weekend, and both are well versed in Liverpool’s high press system.
🚨 NEW: Fabinho and Naby Keita are likely to fill two of the three starting spots with James Milner, Harvey Elliott and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain all in contention for the final spot. #awlive [the athletic] pic.twitter.com/s6uFzjkVAp
– Anfield Watch (@AnfieldWatch) August 11, 2021
However, who will take third place apparently remains up in the air. According to the same source, veteran James Milner, former Arsenal midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and young Harvey Elliot who, like Tsimikas, has impressed in the preseason.
If Elliot were chosen, he would suggest a more offensive lineup, which could perhaps result in a 4-2-3-1 formation. However, the other two would indicate Klopp’s desire to remain in the familiar 4-3-3 configuration.
Elsewhere, it’s unclear who will form the defensive association, where new kid Ibrahim Konate could be in line for his Premier League debut. The three familiar forwards of Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mo Salah, barring a late change, are believed to lead the team.
The midfield selection, however, promises to be intriguing.
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