“Firmino needs a break.”
Ian Doyle: Anyone for a pint of Gazprom?
Yes, the Champions League is back for Liverpool and it’s the return of all your favorites.
Well, regardless of the crowd. And the atmosphere. And Virgil Van Dyck. And Alison Baker. And Joel Matip. And Thiago Alcantara.
These absences leave Jurgen Klopp undecided in defense as Fabinho falls into the center of defense alongside Joe Gomez.
Hence, the midfield is a little trickier. Maybe it’s time to come back for something that may not be everyone’s favorite but can do the job here – midfield Jordan Henderson, James Milner and Jenny Vinaldom.
At the top, Roberto Firmino needs a break. So why not start with the attack that ended at Goodison, in the center of Sadio Mane, left of Diogo Jota, and left of Mohamed Salah?
My Team (4-3-3): Adrian. Alexander Arnold, Gomez, Fabinho, Robertson; Henderson Milner Wijnaldum; Wrong, Mane, Jota.
Follow the Liverpool match with Ajax with live score updates and analysis here
Paul Gorst: Jürgen Klopp has cut a clearly frustrated figure recently, but he will have to curry favor with the troops as Liverpool kick off the Champions League campaign in Amsterdam.
Not Thiago, Van Dyck, Matip, Oxlade-Chamberlain, or Alison … so how does the Reds coach handle this?
For me, Fabinho should drop into center back with Joe Gomez and toe passes unharmed.
In terms of midfield, losing a clearly resplendent Thiago is a big one but not having Fabinho there is tough as well. That might mean calling out Jenny Vinaldom and Nabi Keita.
At the top, Roberto Firmino was given another chance. The Brazilian needs a goal, and we hope his trip to Amsterdam will do the trick. Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane, the brilliant duo, begins.
My Team (4-3-3): Adrian. Alexander-Arnold, Fabinho, Gomez, Robertson; Vinaldum, Henderson, Kita; Salah, Firmino, Mane.
Who makes your debut XI? Is Firmino or Keita included? Let us know in the comments!
“Keita gets a nod to attack Ajax from the start.”
Connor Dunn: Liverpool’s injury status means that there is not much choice for who makes up the five in the center of defense.
As my team-mates have already indicated, Fabinho should start at the center back along with Joe Gomez as Adrian starts on goal with Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson on both wings.
Elsewhere, things are more interesting.
Jordan Henderson was brilliant against Everton and his limitless energy meant he was the first name on the team card in midfield while Jenny Vinaldom is the man who plays in a big European match and joins the captain in the engine room.
For me, I’ll start Naby Keita with the goal of attacking Ajax from outside the field while he brings James Milner to settle the match later once the Reds lead.
Leading the streak, I really liked the way Liverpool finished the Merseyside Derby with Diogo Jota knocking out from the left, Sadio Mane through the middle and Mohamed Salah on the right – so this is the trio I’d like to see starting at the Johan Cruyff Arena.
This, of course, leaves Roberto Firmino on the bench, but he can change the game if needed – as he did against a large European opposition before.
My Team (4-3-3): Adrian. Alexander Arnold, Gomez, Fabinho, Robertson; Henderson, Vinaldom, Kita; Wrong, Mane, Jota.
Why should I register?
Liverpool, the Premier League champions, are ready to compete for a seventh European title.
The Reds will discover their opponents in the group stages when the toss is held in October.
Catch up on the latest news from within Melwood and Liverpool’s preparations in Europe with updates from Paul Gurst, Ian Doyle and the rest of the ECHO team.
You will also receive an additional weekly newsletter containing the latest behind-the-scenes news at Melwood from Bull.
How do I register?
It’s free, easy and takes no time at all.
- first Just click on this link to subscribe to our newsletter.
- Once there, put your email address as it appears at the top and then click on the Liverpool FC team newsletter. There are other things too if you want them, too.
- When you make your selection, click on the “Update Preferences” button at the bottom.
This is! You will receive your emails in your inbox from that moment on. Simply.
“Keita and Firmino are back in the spotlight”
Peter Harris: Here begins the time for a defensive change with a trip to Ajax a difficult start for any Champions League campaign.
Jürgen Klopp confidently declared Fabinho as the center-back earlier in the season and is now being forced to prove his point. With Virgil van Dijk not available to call and Joel Matip also canceled from the first match in the group stage, the Brazilian midfielder needs to show he doesn’t have to worry.
The rest of the back streak remained the same from the Merseyside Derby, with Adrian holding his place. There has been good news that Alison is recovering but there is no indication he is ready to play yet.
In midfield, Jenny Wijnaldum returns alongside captain Jordan Henderson who was a great character against Everton. Naby Keita’s welcome return will give a much-needed boost as the Champions League match approaches for Thiago, who is recovering from the challenge from Richarlison.
It still doesn’t quite work for Firmino, so it’s time to pull him out of the spotlight and make sure he gets a weekend break. Diogo Jota comes to play on the left flank, where he recently impressed Portugal while Mane and Salah could compete for a center position between them.
My Team (4-3-3): Adrian. Alexander-Arnold, Fabinho, Gomez, Robertson; Vinaldum, Henderson, Kita; Jota, Mane, Salah.
“Vinaldom steps into the role of Fabinho.”
Sean Bradbury: A tough test for Liverpool to start their Champions League campaign.
It became more difficult due to the long-term injury of Virgil van Dijk, as well as the absence of Thiago and Joel Matip.
This means that the back line is choosing himself: Adrian, with Fabinho, Joe Gomez, Andy Robertson and Trent Alexander-Arnold in front of him.
The midfield must be reset under Fabinho’s substitution.
I would keep Henderson in the roving role he was leading forward. This means that Jenny Vinaldom is the deepest man, and Henderson and Naby Keita accepted him.
Finally, there are no surprises up front given the status of this engagement. They are the usual suspects.
My Team (4-3-3): Adrian. Alexander Arnold, Gomez, Fabinho, Robertson; Vinaldum, Henderson, Kita; Salah, Firmino, Mane.