Liverpool played one of their best games of the season as they drew 2-2 vs Manchester City right before the international break and this coming weekend, they will face Watford, away from home.
The Reds are undefeated in their last 17 matches in the Premier League and are yet to lose a match during the ongoing season. Watford, on the other hand, have lost four out of their previous six league matches.
The Hornets sacked Xisco Munoz earlier this month and have now brought in Claudio Ranieri as their new boss. Ranieri has obviously won the EPL with Leicester City but since then, he’s found success hard to come by. The Italian will have the tough task of keeping Liverpool at bay and if Klopp’s men show the same form as they did against Manchester City, there’s going to be only one winner.
Having said that though, Jurgen Klopp is going to be without some big-name players this weekend so several fringe players are going to come into the starting XI. And maybe this is the window of opportunity Watford need to maybe snatch up a point.
Liverpool team news vs Watford:
Alisson Becker is going to be the first big miss as he will be playing for Brazil less than 24 hours before Liverpool face Watford so he can’t return in time to play on Saturday.
The absence of Alisson means Kelleher will start in goal.
Van Dijk and Joel Matip will start in central defence and a big sigh of relief for Jurgen Klopp is that Trent Alexander-Arnold has returned to training meaning he will be available for selection this weekend.
Fabinho will also be playing for Brazil on Friday so like Alisson he too will be an absentee on Saturday. This is another cause of concern for the Liverpool boss since Thiago is also on the sidelines and he’s yet to return to training.
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If Thiago cannot be fit in time then Jordan Henderson will have to fill up in defensive midfield.
Curtis Jones and James Milner are likely to pair up in central midfield but there’s also a chance that Naby Keita or Oxlade-Chamberlain could be thrown into the starting line-up.
Sadio Mane and Mo Salah have been in fine form and will be deployed on the flanks but Diogo Jota could miss out after he was sent home from the national team camp.
We are still not sure what the whole issue is but if Jota is not available then Roberto Firmino will start upfront.
“Diogo Jota was dismissed by the national team manager Fernando Santos, after being considered unavailable by the FPF Health and Performance Unit to face Luxembourg, in a meeting to be held this Tuesday,” said a statement from the Portuguese Football Federation, as quoted.
Thankfully, Firmino has recovered from his recent injury and should be 100% fit for Saturday’s game.
Jurgen Klopp has confirmed that both TAA and Diogo Jota will be fit and available for selection meaning Roberto Firmino is going to start on the bench as Jota reprises his role as the main centre-forward.
The manager said, as per the club’s official website: “So it looks really like Trent [Alexander-Arnold] and Diogo will be fine, they will train with us tomorrow completely normal, that’s the plan.”
Liverpool predicted line up vs Watford:
Predicted Starting Line-up: Kelleher; Matip, Van Dijk, Alexander-Arnold, Robertson; Henderson, Jones, Milner/Keita; Salah, Sadio Mane, Jota.