19 Sep 2015

Liverpool lineup vs. Norwich: New injury nightmare; £20m star dropped? Surprise start for Rossiter? (PREDICTION LEAGUE)

After three games without a win, Liverpool are now languishing in fourteenth place in the Premier League table, just three points above the relegation zone. Read that again: three points above the relegation zone. To be fair, a win will (based on other results) shoot the Reds into the top four, but with the club's ongoing struggles to score and create goals, a victory over Norwich is by no means assured.

TEAM NEWS

* Henderson broke his foot in training, so he will definitely be missing again (and for the next couple of months)

* Allen is back in training, and could feature in the squad.

* Rodgers confirmed this week that Sakho is 'in contention' for the game, and after his imperious performance against Bordeaux, it seems inconceivable that he won't start the game. For the overall balance of the team, a Sakho/Lovren swap makes sense.

* If Rodgers makes the change, then that should be it: Skrtel/Sakho for a long run of games, to allow them to build understanding and form a solid partnership.

* Milner will inevitably come back into the team, and fans now face the prospect of the midfielder captaining the side for the foreseeable future.

* After his goal midweek, Lallana deserves to start against Norwich. I'm no fan of his, but if an attacking player scores a goal, he should stay in the team in an attempt to build momentum. Dropping an attacker after scoring is (IMO) a fatal and counter-productive man-management mistake.

* Coutinho will come back into the team, and like Lallana, he needs to start consistently delivering the good. The Brazilian has one of the worst chance-creation ratios in the league (1 every 155 minutes), and even Skrtel has created more chances this season.

* Rossiter had a good game against Bordeaux, and knowing Rodgers, it wouldn't surprise me to see him start Rossiter ahead of Lucas.

Team I'd like to see (3142):

---------------- Bogdan
---- Clyne ----- Skrtel ---- Sakho
---------------- Lucas
Milner ---------------------- Moreno
---------- Lallana - Coutino
--------- Firmino ---- Benteke

* If anyone is to be played out of position as a wing-back, it should be Milner. He's played wide for City, and he has the defensive ability and stamina to get up and down the wing, and help out the defence.

* Lucas holding, with width being provided by Milner, and Moreno (plus Firmino, who can drift out to the left sometimes)

* Lallana and Coutinho as central playmakers, with Lallana dropping into central midfield to help out when needed.

* Firmino playing directly behind Benteke, with a remit to stay as close to the Belgian as possible (with some forways out to the left to provide width.

* Coutinho, Firmino and Benteke should be left alone to FOCUS ON ATTACKING. They'd have three defenders behind them, plus Lucas, Milner and Moreno doing the donkey work. That means not forcing the attacking three to constantly run around like headless chickens pressing, tackling etc. That doesn't mean they don't work hard, it just means their priority is to score/create goals.

I really think this set-up can the best out out of the available personnel.

Prediction League

My prediction: 2-1 Liverpool.

Predicting a 2-0 Liverpool win, Mark Lawrenson told the BBC:

"The Canaries play with a fast tempo, and they have to stick with that at Anfield, but even so I still think Liverpool will have too much for them. If Rodgers picks a balanced team with players in their correct positions, and gets the ball up to Benteke a little bit quicker, then this is a game Liverpool should win".

Get your scores in now! You have until 3.55pm (GMT). Good luck!

Author: Jaimie K



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