14 May 2017

Confirmed Teams: €55m Liverpool star suffers last-gasp injury; Shockingly weak bench; Surprise start for Sturridge

Brazilian attacker Roberto Firmino is out of today's Premier League crunch clash with West Ham.

FULL TEAM: Mignolet, Clyne, Lovren, Matip, Milner, Can, Wijnaldum, Lallana, Coutinho, Origi, Sturridge.

SUBS: Karius, Moreno, Grujic, Alexander-Arnold, Lucas, Klavan, Woodburn.

WEST HAM: Adrián, Fonte, Reid, Collins, Byram, Fernandes, Nordtveit, Cresswell, Ayew, Lanzini, Calleri

* Firmino appears to have a muscle injury, as confirmed by Klopp on Friday: "It’s another muscle. We left him out of training. It’s a muscle thing".

* Good to see Sturridge in the starting lineup, though it'll be a waste of time if he's shunted out wide to accommodate Origi upfront.

* Sturridge should play centrally, and if Klopp plays him out of position, it'll be the latest in a long line of questionable decisions.

* Lucas drops to the bench after also picking up a minor 'muscle' injury during last week's game.

* Lallana returns to the starting lineup, and after just one goal and one assist in the last 18 games (and nothing for 16 games in a row), the time for tenuous excuses and lame justifications is over. He must deliver today. End of story.

* The less said about the bench, the better. One of the weakest of the season, and totally devoid of matchwinners and/or players capable of changing a game. Probable formation:

------------- Mignolet
Clyne -- Lovren -- Matip --- Clyne
-- Lallana --- Can - Wijnaldum
-- Origi --- Sturridge -- Coutinho

After Arsenal's victory on Saturday, the heat is well and truly on for Liverpool today, but the Reds have persistently bottled it in high-pressure games under Klopp. Hopefully, the team will buck the trend today against a West Ham side decimated by injury. Defeat is unthinkable.

* Firmino: €55m-rated (CIES).


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