9 Dec 2015

Confirmed Team News: £40m Liverpool-trio miss Sion flight; 'big talent' out with 'illness'

Liverpool face FC Sion on Thursday in the club's final Europa League group game, and at least five first team regulars have already been ruled out of the game.

Liverpool flew out to Sion earlier this afternoon, and according to ESPN, several players did not make the trip:

"Lucas Leiva, Joe Allen and Alberto Moreno trained but did not make the trip. Jordon Ibe [described by Klopp as a 'big talent'] did not travel because of illness, while striker Daniel Sturridge has been ruled out for several weeks [with] a hamstring strain".

With the hectic Christmas schedule just around the corner, it's vital to rest the club's key players, especially Lucas, who is one of Liverpool's most effective players under Klopp.

Given the reduced importance of the Sion game, it's a good opportunity for Klopp to play some fringe players, and with Moreno out of the picture, Brad Smith must surely have a great chance of making the starting XI.

Smith delivered one of the crosses of the season against Southampton, and his pinpoint delivery - something that's extremely rare for Reds players this season - made it easy for Divock Origi to score the goal.

Liverpool crossing accuracy this season is atrocious (199 crosses overall; only 37 accurate), and with Christian Benteke crying out for decent service, it makes sense to include in the team a player who's capable of delivering an accurate cross.

With Conor Randall also available, there's no real need to start Nathaniel Clyne. He should be rested too, and Liverpool should go with Smith and Randall against Sion.

* Lucas: £8m-rated. Allen: £20m-rated (!) Moreno: Cost £12m. Combined cost/worth: £40m

Author: Jaimie K


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