Predicting how Liverpool will line up during 2019/20 PL opener – opinion

After securing yet another Champions League trophy in June, all eyes for Liverpool will surely be on eclipsing Pep Guardiola’s rampant Manchester City side in the Premier League.

The Reds, to their credit, took the contest right to the bitter end last term, but came up short in what was a thrilling title race.

Following a rather low-key summer window by their standards, Jurgen Klopp’s side will head into the new season with barely any new faces as things stand, and the hope will be that those who did the business for them in Europe can do so again domestically.

We’ve had a go at predicting how they might look for that opening Premier League game of the season against Norwich at Anfield.

Liverpool's predicted starting line-up for opening game of the season

In goal, Alisson will continue as the Reds’ undisputed first-choice goalkeeper following an impressive campaign both at club and international level. After being named the Best Goalkeeper at the 2019 Copa America, it’s fair to say the Brazilian’s spirits will be at a real high.

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In front of him, Liverpool’s miserly defence from last season is likely to be at full strength. Joe Gomez’s recovery from injury towards the closing stages of the campaign was a major boost and he could well be the man to partner Virgil van Dijk at centre-back, despite Joel Matip ending the season strongly.

On the flanks, Andy Robertson and Trent Alexander-Arnold will look to solidify their claims as being the Premier League’s most productive full-backs.

Midfield is perhaps the one spot where there does appear to be a grey area. Klopp’s rotation policy has seen the side’s trio in the middle of the park vary often throughout the last few seasons.

On paper though, Fabinho is the specialist option at the base of midfield, whilst Naby Keita’s injury woes at the Africa Cup of Nations are a real source of concern.

The 24-year-old was hampered by setbacks last season and though a recent update offers a ray of hope for him to potentially make the team on the opening day of the campaign, Georginio Wijnaldum seems likelier to start instead after a brilliant 2019/20 that saw him start 32 of Liverpool’s Premier League games.

To complete Klopp’s midfield three, club captain Jordan Henderson will likely figure prominently despite some criticism from certain sections over his worth to the team. The skipper really came into his own towards the end of last season, revitalised in a more offensive capacity after discussions with Jurgen Klopp.

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Up front, Klopp’s desire to play his three regulars is unlikely to be recognised against Norwich as Sadio Mane continues to inspire Senegal at AFCON.

The winger is unlikely to be rushed back into the first-team fold with the tournament only ending on Friday (three weeks from the Premier League’s opening weekend), and so that could mean a rare opportunity for Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain to feature.

He’s mainly been deployed as a central midfielder during his time at Anfield but the England international featured regularly as a winger for Arsenal and Southampton and would help plug a temporary gap for Klopp.

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