Liverpool face Arsenal in the Community Shield on Saturday. Here are three players who will be under the spotlight as the season kicks off.
Liverpool may not have made many signings in the transfer window but there are still questions at the club. The Community Shield offers a first real glimpse at Jurgen Klopp may answer them.
With needs in midfield and attack, three players, in particular, will have a spotlight on them.
With Jordan Henderson unlikely to start, Keita surely will. The Guinean finished the season wonderfully after the restart and we firmly expect him to keep his place here.
The doubts over Gini Wijnaldum’s future hand an opportunity to Keita, too. The Dutchman could leave in this window or at the end of next season and if he does, Keita has a shot at a regular role.
But he’s got to show consistency. That starts on Saturday when the midfielder can prove that his form last season wasn’t a flash in the pan. Perform well, and Keita would nail down a place immediately.
This should be where the fun really begins. Many signings under Klopp have taken a while to get going and in that sense, Minamino has had a luxury. The Japanese international arrived in January but Liverpool didn’t really need him. Instead, he’s had a bedding-in period under little pressure.
That excuse stops on Saturday, though. Minamino is a fully-fledged member of the squad and we need to see the best of him.
The most interesting thing will be how he’s used. Will Klopp use him primarily out wide or as cover for Roberto Firmino. We should get our first look against Arsenal.
When Liverpool play the Community Shield, few players will have more pressure on them than Brewster. We don’t even expect him to start but his performances for Swansea and in pre-season have built hype.
He now feels like the answer to Liverpool’s squad problems – Brewster can offer the goals that Divock Origi hasn’t. The Liverpool Echo have even run a piece comparing him to Robbie Fowler.
The 20-year-old hasn’t even played in the Premier League yet.
We’re not sure if Brewster will be at the club all season as Liverpool may loan him out still. But if he comes off the bench to play well on Saturday, he’ll surely stick around.