5 May 2016

Confirmed Liverpool XI: Big surprise as Klopp dumps £28m-duo. 'Brilliant' star returns. Mistake?

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has sprung a few surprises for tonight's Europa League clash with Villareal, and luckily, the omission for Daniel Sturridge is not one of them.

FULL TEAM: Mignolet, Clyne, Toure, Lovren, Moreno, Can, Milner, Lallana, Firmino, Coutinho, Sturridge.

SUBS: Ward, Benteke, Lucas, Allen, Skrtel, Ibe, Smith.

* It's a surprise to see both Lucas and Allen+ on the bench; Given his excellent form this year, Allen's snub is particularly egregious, especially since Klopp has selected a half-fit player (Can) ahead of him.

* Klopp has rushed Can^ back into the team a little over two weeks since he ruptured - not strained or tweaked - ruptured his ankle ligaments. This is a massive gamble IMO, and it could end up costing Liverpool.

* Sakho and Skrtel have both struggled after being rushed back from injury this season, but this doesn't seem to faze Klopp.

* Great to see Sturridge starting, an with Benteke on the bench, there's a goal-threat there to utilise at some point during the game (if needed).

* As expected, Klopp has found a way to shoehorn Adam Lallana into the starting line-up, even though he has just one goal in his last 12 games.

Based on the personnel, it looks like Klopp will go with 4231, with Milner wasted in central midfield, and Firmino in his least effective position (for LFC):

-------------- Mignolet
Clyne ---- Lovren -- Toure ----- Moreno
------------- Can -- Milner
Lallana ------- Firmino --- Coutinho
-------------- Sturridge

On the plus side, this is a very attacking lineup, and should be more than capable of getting a positive result.

^ ^ Hailed by James Milner as 'brilliant'.
+ Lucas: £8m-rated. Allen: £20m-rated.

Author: Jaimie K


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