Often Liverpool’s line-ups are difficult to predict. This is one of those rare occasions where naming Jurgen Klopp’s starting XI feels fairly straightforward.
In fact, we are backing the Reds boss to name the exact same XI that prevailed against RB Leipzig in the Champions League in midweek.
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it
With James Milner and Fabinho both doubts for the Merseyside derby, it makes little sense for Klopp to rush anyone ahead of fitness off the back of such a convincing performance on Tuesday night.
Ozan Kabak, then, looks set to make his inaugural Anfield appearance against Liverpool’s noisy neighbours opposite Stanley Park.
The seven-time Turkey international was recently lauded as a “future captain of a team” by former Schalke boss, David Wagner, who also said “everybody was clear he was a massive talent”.
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Thiago Alcantara, too, will be hoping Saturday will be the day his Anfield hoodoo is finally lifted, with the Spaniard still without a home win since his £20 million from Bayern Munich last summer.
Jordan Henderson is expected to make it seven consecutive start at the heart of Liverpool’s defence. The club-captain was outstanding alongside Kabak against Leipzig, after all.
Alisson Becker is set to make his an overdue appearance against Everton for the first time since June 2020.
The Brazilian missed the previous 2-2 stalemate back in October, following a shoulder injury that kept him out for three weeks.
Saturday’s fixture also represents the first time that these two teams will lock horns following the season-ending injury to Virgil van Dijk, as a result of a horror-tackle from Jordan Pickford.
The England international is set to return to Everton’s starting lineup against Manchester City this evening having missed the last four matches with a rib injury, per The Guardian.
Meanwhile, Dominic Calvert-Lewin will miss the rearranged game with City because of the hamstring injury, but Ancelotti remains hopeful of his leading goalscorer returning for the Anfield encounter.