Liverpool have multiple midfield injuries to contend with as they travel to Brentford on Saturday. Here are six midfield options Jurgen Klopp can still pick from.
Liverpool suffer injuries for Brentford trip
Jurgen Klopp confirmed on Thursday that Liverpool have midfield injuries for their top to Brentford. He says there’s ‘no chance’ that Thiago features, while Naby Keita likely won’t, either.
Harvey Elliott remains out, of course, and James Milner requires fitness after being ill. All in all, Liverpool are quite short in the middle – though, we expect Milner to be available.
So with all that in mind, what are Klopp’s midfield options?
Fabinho should play in this one and he feels like the only absolute certainty. Expect him to shield the defence as he always does as Liverpool look to rely on him quite heavily at Brentford.
Now, Henderson would be another certainty but this is where we mention the other issue here – Porto away. Liverpool have a huge Champions League game there next week.
Can Henderson start both back-to-back? With Thiago missing, he’ll have to play in Portugal which does cast some doubt on him playing here, too.
Because who do Liverpool have after Porto? Manchester City. Henderson definitely plays that, too, and three games in eight days is a big ask of a player with injury problems.
We won’t be surprised if Klopp leaves him out.
We’ve been very, very impressed with Jones this week after he played three different roles. He’d be our pick to come in for Thiago/Keita for this one as Liverpool look to attack Brentford all-out.
If he doesn’t start here, he’ll surely start in Porto.
Oxlade-Chamberlain is another option that’s similar to Jones and he may well get the nod. But the 28-year-old struggled against Norwich City in midweek as nothing would come off for him.
We’d have him behind Jones in the pecking order right now but Klopp may see it differently.
If Milner is back to full fitness, there’s a chance he plays. As we say, Henderson may have to sit this one out and bringing in the vice-captain makes a lot of sense in that instance.
We don’t think we’ll get both Henderson and Milner, though, as Liverpool will surely go more attacking than that.
Klopp started Minamino on the left against Norwich but moved him into midfield at halftime. He explained his thinking after the game.
“We wanted him as a footballer in midfield because Taki looked really strong today,” he said, per Liverpoolfc.com. “We didn’t use these half-spaces enough so we put him there.”
Klopp praised Minamino quite a bit post-match, actually. On top of that, the Japan international scored from his midfield role in the second half. There’s a very good chance that he earned a place here.
Minamino surely won’t feature against Porto or City but Brentford away? He may have played his way into Klopp’s plans.