Liverpool will be boosted by the return of defensive mainstay Virgil van Dijk, when they face off against bitter rivals Manchester United this weekend.
Liverpool will be aiming to open up a three-point lead over Manchester City on the Premier League table, when they take on Manchester United at Old Trafford on Sunday afternoon.
With just one win in their last four matches across all competitions, Liverpool find themselves under a bit of pressure as the race for the Premier League title heats up. And, following their goalless draw against Bayern Munich in the Champions League, Jurgen Klopp’s men will be keen on returning to winning ways against their age-old rivals this weekend.
Klopp is likely to make a few alterations to the side that was held at home by the Bavarian giants earlier this week. No change is expected between the sticks, however, with Alisson Becker being the undisputed No. 1 for the Merseyside outfit.
Defenders Dejan Lovren and Joe Gomez remain sidelined for Liverpool, Klopp confirmed ahead of the big game. “Dejan is not in, Joe [Gomez] is not in, but I think pretty much all the rest are in training at least,” the German said in his pre-match press conference.
However, Liverpool will be handed a huge boost by the return of defensive rock Virgil van Dijk. The Dutchman missed the Bayern Munich game due to suspension, but is available for selection and should walk right back into the lineup on Sunday. He will pair up with Joel Matip at the heart of the Reds’ defence, flanked by Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andrew Robertson.
Jordan Henderson put in by far his best performance of the season against Bayern and should start against Manchester United, in what will be his 300th Premier League appearance. Fabinho, who started in defence in the midweek encounter, could move into the defensive midfield role on Sunday, while Georginio Wijnaldum’s form makes him undroppable, meaning Naby Keita drops out.
There is some good news for Liverpool in the attacking department with Rhian Brewster and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain both making solid progress in training. Neither is expected to play any part this weekend, however. Xherdan Shaqiri too, is in a much better shape, having recovered from a minor abdominal strain.
“We thought if we needed [Shaqiri] for 10 or 15 minutes [against Bayern] we could bring him at least. Now he is another five or six days in training, which always helps,” Klopp said during his pre-match presser.
The Swiss international is unlikely to start on Sunday, however, with the trio of Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane the obvious picks in attack.