Diogo Jota is primed to start for Liverpool on the basis of pure form alone as Jurgen Klopp picks his starting eleven to face Manchester City at Etihad on Sunday.
Last two season’s 1-2 of the Premier League will go head-to-head at Etihad on Sunday as Manchester City host Liverpool. The Reds have struggled due to injuries and Jurgen Klopp might just have to field another surprise selection in central defence.
Alisson, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andrew Robertson are all certain to start for Liverpool. Ideally, Klopp would have opted to start Joe Gomez at right-back if he needed more defensive cover. However, the injury pileups in central defence renders it impossible, even as a probability.
Joel Matip will struggle for fitness ahead of the Manchester City match, but should make it to the starting eleven. Rhys Williams has an outside chance of a start, but will only have that opportunity if Matip is not adjudged to be fit enough to start on Sunday.
Meanwhile in midfield, summer arrival Thiago is struggling to be fit and will not start against Manchester City as confirmed by Jurgen Klopp in the pre-match conference.
“With Thiago, that’s how it is. It’s an injury but doesn’t need a surgery, all these kind of things, but still takes time. The challenge that day was a harsh one and directly against the leg, so still adapting but improving. It will not be too long anymore but for this game I don’t think he will be in.”
This, combined with injury to regulars like Fabinho means we could see 4-2-3-1 again, with Jordan Henderson and Georginio Wijnaldum as the double pivot. This will allow Klopp to include Diogo Jota without axing Roberto Firmino from the starting eleven. The Portuguese international is fit to start and should, in all honesty, having been the in-form forward currently for Liverpool.
Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah will all start, with Jota making it a fearsome foursome in attack. The likes of Takumi Minamino and Naby Keita are prudent options off the bench.
Predicted Liverpool Starting XI: Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Gomez, Matip, Robertson; Henderson, Wijnaldum; Salah, Firmino, Mane; Jota