Jurgen Klopp hints at a change in starting lineup ahead of Southampton clash.
Liverpool will face off Southampton at St.Marys Stadium on Friday night as both teams will aim to shrug the other and bag three points. The Reds will be conscious about this game as Liverpool go neck-to-neck with Manchester City for the Premier League title. Southampton, on the other hand, are fighting against relegation and a victory against the title challengers could bolster their confidence.
Jurgen Klopp’s men will only be able to reinstate the top spot only with a victory against well inculcated Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side, knowing a draw will put agony on the Reds faithful. The Reds got lucky last time against Tottenham Hotspur in a 2-1 victory at Anfield, thanks to a howler from Hugo Lloris and Toby Alderweireld to divert the ball inside his own net in the stoppage time.
Jordan Henderson started the last Premier League game instead of the stardom Fabinho in the middle of the park and people started to raise their eyebrows for that particular decision. However, Jurgen Klopp explained that the Brazilian needed much-needed rest after travelling far and training hard with his national camp.
“Fab couldn’t train one day a little bit, not long enough to really know how he reacts after the international break. Not playing (for Brazil) but flying a lot and training a lot. If you are not playing then you train more than the other players. Ask Ali (Alisson Becker) or Bobby (Firmino) how much Fab trained. It was clear that he would come on.
“This was the situation. It’s also about who is used to who in the positioning and the opponent. It wasn’t 100% clear what system Tottenham would play before the game. We chose a formation that we thought would enable us to adapt pretty quick to it. We didn’t but that wasn’t only because of the midfield.” Klopp says.
After training with the rest of the squad regularly before the Friday night clash, Fabinho is set to be reinstalled in the starting lineup against Southampton. The 25-year-old’s influence in the midfield was also explained by Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher who wanted him to start every game.
Alongside the midfielder, Liverpool fans are all over the moon as their defender Joe Gomez is set to be named in the squad after a gap of five months. The English International picked up an injury against Burnley in December and has not featured since then. It is unlikely to see him start the game, but he will be important to the side as the club is well positioned to challenge for the Premier League and Champions League.
Here’s how Twitter reacted.
— James Pearce (@JamesPearceEcho) April 5, 2019
Jurgen Klopp has explained his decision to leave out Fabinho against Tottenham with the Brazilian set to be recalled tomorrow night.
“Fab couldn’t train one day a little bit, not long enough to really know how he reacts after the international break.”https://t.co/SRp5WDBRkl
— Anfield HQ (@AnfieldHQ) April 4, 2019
— Oliver Bond (@Oliver__Bond) April 4, 2019
Joe Gomez is fit to return to the squad at Southampton – The average age of Liverpool’s current back four is just under 25 and it will drop further when the 21-year-old is considered ready to resume his partnership with Virgil Van Dijk. [@_ChrisBascombe] pic.twitter.com/UkNronlZKe
— LFC Transfer Room (@LFCTransferRoom) April 5, 2019
Following the clash against Southampton, the Reds will return to Champions League as they take on FC Porto in the Quarterfinals at Anfield on Tuesday.