Liverpool goalkeeper Adrian is an injury doubt for their upcoming Premier League encounter against Southampton at St. Mary’s Stadium.
Coming on the back of their UEFA Super Cup success against Chelsea, Liverpool will be aiming to pick up their second win of the 2019-20 Premier League when they clash against Southampton at St. Mary’s Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
While fatigue is likely to play a role in Jurgen Klopp’s selection plans after Liverpool exerted themselves for 120 minutes in the midweek, their preparations have been further hit by an injury backup goalkeeper Adrian. The Spaniard picked up an ankle injury after colliding with a pitch invader after the Super Cup triumph.
With first-choice Alisson already out with a calf injury, Liverpool are left with 35-year-old new signing Andy Lonergan as the latest backup option. However, Klopp hinted that the goalkeeper was in better condition and said a final call would be taken on his availability on Saturday morning.
Speaking in his pre-match presser, the German tactician said, “Yesterday it was swollen. Today I spoke to him and he said it is better, much better than yesterday, but we have to see. He could not have played directly after we landed in Liverpool, but I saw him now, he is OK and it looks better, but the decision will be made tomorrow – there is no chance to make it early.”
With Adrian also admitting that he could be ready for the match, he might get the nod ahead of Lonergan against the Saints. There is likely to be a solitary change in the Liverpool backline, with Trent Alexander-Arnold likely to replace Joe Gomez at right-back. Joel Matip, Virgil van Dijk and Andrew Robertson should hold on to their spots in the playing XI.
The midfield is likely to see some changes as Klopp might opt to rest both James Milner and Fabinho, both of whom seemed exhausted after the midweek encounter. Liverpool will also be without Naby Keita, who is out with a muscle strain he picked up on the eve of the Super Cup. “We don’t know exactly how long it will take. But he’s not available,” said Klopp about the Guinean.
Captain Jordan Henderson is a definite starter in the middle of the park, while Georginio Wijnaldum is expected to return to the starting XI. It will be interesting to see who among the two will be deployed as the holding midfielder, should Klopp opt to rest Fabinho. The third midfield slot is likely to be occupied by former Southampton captain Adam Lallana.
Roberto Firmino did not start the midweek encounter and should return to the fold on Saturday at the centre of Liverpool’s attacking trident. Both Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah are likely to hold on to their spots, despite having played more than 100 minutes against Chelsea earlier in the week.
Predicted Liverpool XI: Adrian; Alexander-Arnold, Matip, van Dijk, Robertson; Wijnaldum, Henderson, Lallana; Salah, Firmino, Mane