Liverpool starting lineup to face Fulham in Carabao Cup semi-final second leg – predicted

This Wednesday, Liverpool have the chance to book their place in the first cup final of the season.

The Reds already have one foot in the Carabao Cup final, travelling to Craven Cottage with a 2-1 advantage from the semi-final first leg at Anfield earlier this month.

Nothing can be taken for granted though and Jurgen Klopp and co only need look over at the other semi between Middlesbrough and Chelsea for an example of how things can go against the odds.

Liverpool also have a host of injury and availability issues to contend with, while there is the FA Cup at the weekend and ongoing title race to think about.

Keeping everyone fit and happy, while putting out the best possible side, becomes a harder task with each game.

With a date at Wembley at stake, here's how Liverpool could line up to face Fulham on Wednesday.


Goalkeeper & Defence

Conor Bradley, Bournemouth vs Liverpool

Caoimhin Kelleher will return to his post as the Reds' cup keeper, as he looks to secure his second Carabao Cup final for Liverpool.

Conor Bradley is likely to continue in front of him in the continued absence of Trent Alexander-Arnold. Liverpool's vice-captain is said to be 'close' to a return but is expected to sit this one out, with a return slated for the FA Cup clash with Norwich.

Virgil van Dijk and Ibrahima Konate should continue at centre back, with few other senior options fit and available.

Though Konate's minutes still need to be managed carefully, Jarell Quansah may be more likely to be brought in at the weekend for the game against Norwich.

Joe Gomez, however, may be given a rest in place of Owen Beck, who made a brief cameo in Sunday's 4-0 win over Bournemouth.

Andy Robertson, meanwhile, will be part of the squad for the first time since October, Pep Lijnders has confirmed.

Midfield

Alexis Mac Allister, Bournemouth vs Liverpool

Dominik Szoboszlai: out, Wataru Endo: out, Thiago and Stefan Bajcetic: out. Liverpool's midfield options are so depleted that the engine room practically picks itself for this one.

Alexis Mac Allister should continue at the base of the three, following his superb display at Bournemouth. Harvey Elliott and Ryan Gravenberch will likely line up on the right and left of the World Cup winner, giving Curtis Jones a rest after his precautionary substitution at the weekend.

Youngsters Bobby Clark, James McConnell and Trey Nyoni were all on the bench for the first leg at Anfield. Expect to see them in the matchday squad once again and there could be a chance for some precious memories, if any of the teenage trio make it onto the pitch for a semi win.

Attack

Curtis Jones, Cody Gakpo, Liverpool vs West Ham United - Propaganda

Curtis Jones, Cody Gakpo, Liverpool vs West Ham United - Propaganda

Having been left out of the starting lineup on Sunday, Cody Gakpo is in line to start at Fulham, with the Dutchman making the Carabao Cup his tournament this year.

No player has more than Gakpo's four goals in the League Cup this year, while he is the first Reds player since the 80s to score in four consecutive rounds – including the semi-final first leg.

Luis Diaz's substitution around the hour mark against the Cherries points to a start on Wednesday. Darwin Nuñez, however, played the full 90 and despite his impressive double, he's probably due a rest.

Diogo Jota – Liverpool's best finisher of the Premier League era, according to Jamie Carragher – could be the man to complete the front three.

19-year-old Kaide Gordon made a Premier League comeback on Sunday, almost exactly two years on from his debut. The highly rated star could be another in the squad hoping to make an impact from the bench at Craven Cottage.

Predicted starting XI to face Fulham

(4-3-3): Kelleher; Bradley, Konate, Van Dijk, Beck; Elliott, Mac Allister, Gravenberch; Diaz, Gakpo, Jota

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