Liverpool are likely to be without the services of defensive mainstay Virgil van Dijk, when they take on Chelsea at Stamford Bridge this weekend.
Premier League leaders Liverpool will be aiming to keep their winning run intact, when they take on fellow title challengers Chelsea on Saturday.
Liverpool have won each of their six league games of the 2018-19 season, establishing themselves as early favourites for the title. However, they come into the game having tasted a 2-1 defeat at the hands of their weekend opponents in the third round of the Carabao Cup earlier this week.
Manager Jurgen Klopp will be rallying his troops to bounce back strongly at Stamford Bridge and make it seven wins in seven league fixtures. To that end, the German tactician is set to recall a number of first-team regulars for the encounter, having rotated the squad for the cup tie on Wednesday night.
Goalkeeper Alisson Becker will return to action after having been rested for the cup defeat earlier this week, along with left-back Andrew Robertson. Trent Alexander-Arnold is set to come back into the starting XI at right-back, having recovered from an illness that kept him out against the Blues last time out.
Speaking of the England international in his pre-match press conference, Klopp said,”Trent trained yesterday completely normal. It was not a knock, Trent was a bit ill, but yesterday that looked pretty good.”
However, the German wasn’t optimistic about the chances of star defender Virgil van Dijk being available for the big game on Saturday, after he suffered a rib injury last weekend.
“Virgil, we have to wait. He didn’t train with the team so far but I can’t say anything more about that. But I prefer that he is fit and available and I can make decisions, if he needs a rest or not in one of the other games. For the last game he was not available but now we will see for tomorrow,” Klopp told reporters on Friday.
With the Dutchman unlikely to be available, Joel Matip will start his third game on the trot for the Reds. The other centre-back spot is likely to be taken up by the impressive Joe Gomez, meaning Dejan Lovren will not be involved, having returned from injury in the cup defeat against Chelsea.
There was a boost for the Reds as far as their midfield is concerned, as Georginio Wijnaldum is fit again and trained with the team on Friday. “Gini trained as well, so all good,” Klopp said of the Dutchman in his pre-match presser.
The Netherlands international is expected to walk right back into the team as part of the midfield triumvirate, along with in-form man James Milner and captain Jordan Henderson, who did not start against Chelsea in the cup tie. New signings Fabinho and Naby Keita will be the players dropping out.
FIFA Puskas Award winner Mohamed Salah will be reinstated on the right-side of the attack against his former club, having been left out of the cup game.
Sadio Mane is Liverpool’s leading goalscorer this term, with four goals against his name. He should continue on the left-flank for the trip to London, while Roberto Firmino is set to start as the centre-forward, ahead of Daniel Sturridge, who had scored for the Merseysiders on Wednesday.