Harvey Elliott will be in serious contention to face Norwich City on Saturday. This comes after an injury to Curtis Jones.
Curtis Jones will not play in Liverpool’s Premier League opener. Jurgen Klopp confirmed as much on Wednesday, saying the 20-year-old has a concussion.
“He had a slight concussion so we just have to follow the protocol,” Klopp told Liverpoolfc.com.
“He is fine, he feels fine again, but that’s the protocol. He is available for training from Sunday on I think.”
Now, with both Jordan Henderson and Thiago likely sitting this one out – at least from the start – we imagine Jones would have made the XI here. He certainly might be the next-best option in midfield.
The Scouser has a bit of a niche in the Reds’ midfield, after all. He’s capable of consistently driving with the ball and progressing into the final third. Jones adds a wonderful attacking element in midfield, especially without Thiago and Henderson.
And if he’s missing, we think Harvey Elliott must be in serious contention to face Norwich.
Could Harvey Elliott face Norwich City?
We’re not sure Klopp would start Elliott. We think there’s a good chance he goes for experience, given there will be a few missing players for this one.
Ibrahima Konate will likely make his debut at the back, while Kostas Tsimikas is almost certainly making his first Premier League start. Throw in the missing midfielders and leaning towards experience makes sense.
So that could see James Milner and Naby Keita start in midfield, with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain another option. But we do think Elliott should be in line for a start.
The teenager has moved to a centre-midfield position in pre-season and it looks like his long-term future is there. We like the move a lot.
Elliott now offers a fantastic attacking option in the middle. He’s always looking to create, while his close control allows Liverpool to move their midfield right up to the box.
That could be very important against a newly-promoted Norwich side. They’ll likely sit very deep and invite pressure, hoping to hound Liverpool in dangerous areas.
Jones would have been ideal for that – he thrives in such scenarios. But Elliott offers a wonderful alternative.
And quite honestly, there’s not really a better time to hand him his Premier League debut than against a relegation-battler when you’re short in midfield. It’s one Klopp will surely consider.