16 Mar 2016

Liverpool XI vs. M.Utd: Massive boost for LFC? Defender out; surprise start for 'fantastic' international?

Liverpool face Manchester United in the Europa League on Thursday, and although a 2-0 lead is a huge positive, the Reds should be going into the game with a more commanding lead. Can Jurgen Klopp's team finish the job and make it through to the quarter-finals?

Pre-match news:

* The players have had 7 days' clear rest, so should be fresh and raring to go.

* United played on Sunday, so in theory, LVG's team should be tireder than Liverpool, which could be a big boost for the Reds.

* James Milner^ has recovered from the illness that kept him out of last week's game, and is vying for a return to the starting lineup.

* Jon Flanagan is not in the Europa League squad, so will not feature in the game.

Pre-match talk:

* John Aldridge: "We’ve beaten United once and we can do it again. We have to go there, roll our sleeves up and be strong, both physically and mentally".

* Nicky Butt: "They have two goals on us, but it’s home advantage and...that magic can happen at any time."

* Bryan Robson: “If the fans get right behind the team, players respond to that. If you get that atmosphere going and we get an early goal, then it can be done.”

* Wayne Rooney: "Two goals is doable. The first goal will be important. If we get that, then we will be back in the game."

As Aldo suggests, this game will be a real test of the team's mental resilience, and in the cauldron of Old Trafford, with the pressure of (arguably) being favourites, it'll be interesting to see how the team responds.

Injuries notwithstanding, it seems likely that Klopp will keep the same team as last week; the only possible surprise I can see is Milner replacing either Lallana or Can in the XI.

P. LEAGUE

You have until Thursday 8.05PM (GMT) to participate. Like last week, the points are doubled again (Only for the predictions below);

* 40 Points: First goalscorer (either team)

* 40 Points: Collective LFC throw-ins

* 60 Points: Liverpool player with most long balls (% - Not including Mignolet).

* 150 Point Triple-Whammy: Goalscorer + thrown-ins + long balls

* The Ellen Ripley Mega-Bonus: 200 points. Perfect score + Goalscorer + thrown-ins + long balls.


^ Recently described as 'fantastic' by Adam Lallana

Author: Jaimie K



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