Jurgen Klopp will be without the services of club captain Jordan Henderson when Liverpool host Everton in the Merseyside derby at Anfield on Sunday.
Gameweek 14 of the Premier League will end with a blockbuster fixture, with the 232nd Merseyside derby set to be played on Sunday, when Liverpool welcome Everton to Anfield. And, Jurgen Klopp has just one major absentee for the crucial fixture, although that player is Jordan Henderson.
The Liverpool boss is likely to play it safe against Everton, after his decision to rest Trent Alexander-Arnold in the midweek European fixture backfired spectacularly. The 20-year-old Liverpool native should start as the right-back, with Joe Gomez moving into the heart of the defence.
Partnering Gomez will be Virgil van Dijk, meaning Dejan Lovren is set to drop down to the bench. On the left flank, Andrew Robertson will provide his assured presence. The back four will provide cover to Alisson Becker, who is an ever present in the Liverpool goal.
Van Dijk is also set to don the armband, with Henderson suspended and James Milner likely to be benched. The Liverpool captain will be serving a one-match ban after being sent off for two bookable offences last weekend against Watford. But, Klopp iterated in his pre-match press conference that with other solutions available, the Reds are unlikely to miss Henderson.
“As long as all the others are fit, we have solutions for that [Henderson’s absence] and that’s good. The squad situation, I am not 100 per cent sure in the moment to be honest. The day before yesterday we played and as you can imagine, it was quite an intense game and there were a lot of knocks that we have to see.”
Meanwhile, Klopp is likely to shuffle his system once again, reverting to the 4-2-3-1. The midfield pivot should feature the usual suspects in Georginio Wijnaldum and Fabinho, with the duo providing a solid foundation for the fearsome attacking quartet.
Speaking of the four players who will look to make the difference, Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Xherdan Shaqiri are certain starters to test the Everton defence. Salah will be the striker once again for Liverpool, with Firmino playing in the no. 10 role.
Shaqiri will start on the right flank, aiming to prove a point after he was dropped from the starting lineup on Wednesday. On the bench, Daniel Sturridge will be the impact substitute, although Klopp will be hoping that the game is dead and buried by the time the Englishman comes on.