Liverpool starting lineup to face Brighton – predicted

When Liverpool's season resumes following the March international break, the business end of the season will have really begun, with only ten more Premier League games left of both the 2023/24 campaign and Jurgen Klopp's tenure.

Normally treated with a mixture of frustration and disdain, this moth's international break might actually be quite well received at Liverpool, allowing the Reds some much needed rest and recovering time before facing the challenges ahead.

Liverpool kick off the final push at home to Brighton on Sunday 31 March, knowing that a good result could well see them regain top spot in the table, with Arsenal travelling to Manchester City the same day.

A win is far from a gimme though. Klopp's side have not beaten the Seagulls in any of their last four and have only won one in the eight most recent meetings in all competitions.

The last three Premier League meetings at Anfield have ended: draw, draw, defeat.

Brighton's form of late has been patchy and if the Reds are on it they should have enough to end their run of poor form against the Seagulls, but there is also the added narrative here that Roberto De Zerbi could use the match to help audition for his next job.

Here's how Liverpool could line up to face Brighton.


Goalkeeper & Defenders

Ibrahima Konate

Nottingham Forest v Liverpool - Premier League - The City Ground Liverpool s Ibrahima Konate ahead of the Premier League match at The City Ground, Nottingham. Picture date: Saturday March 2, 2024. Copyright: xMikexEgertonx 75504112

Alisson has been left out international duty for the March fixtures as he continues to work on his recovery from the hamstring injury that has sidelined him since early February.

While Klopp has name-checked several players who are nearing returns after the international break, Alisson is not one of them and Caoimhin Kelleher is set to continue his run in goal against Brighton.

Ibrahima Konate was called up for France despite missing Liverpool's last three games with an issue. Assuming he is now fit and fine again (and doesn't aggravate anything on national team duty), he should start alongside Virgil van Dijk against Brighton on 31 March.

Andy Robertson was dropped from the starting lineup for the last Premier League game against Manchester City, but should start here ahead of Joe Gomez or Kostas Tsimikas.

There have been reports that Trent Alexander-Arnold could soon be targeting his comeback, but it is likely to come after this fixture. The impressive Conor Bradley will keep his place at right back.

Midfield

Wataru Endo

Wataru Endo

Jurgen Klopp has revealed that Curtis Jones has a chance of making the squad for the visit of Brighton. The homegrown midfielder has been out with an ankle sprain since the win over Brentford on 17 February.

If he is available, Jones, who had established himself as a key player for Klopp before his injury, is more likely to come on off the bench after his spell out, meaning a midfield trio of Dominic Szoboszlai, Wataru Endo and Alexis Mac Allister is to be expected — if all are fit.

Harvey Elliott and hopefully Ryan Gravenberch will be other options for the engine room.

Excitingly, the manager has also teased that Stefan Bajcetic is set to return to team training after the international break and could soon be in line for his first appearances since September.

The young midfielder shared a recent update of his progress whetting fan appetites for his comeback.

Attack

240318 -- MANCHESTER, March 18, 2024 -- Liverpool s Mohamed Salah C celebrates after scoring during the FA Cup quarterfinal match between Manchester United, ManU and Liverpool in Manchester, Britain, on March 17, 2024.

Just as Mohamed Salah finally returned to action for Liverpool, three more forwards took knocks.

There were concerns for Luis Diaz, Cody Gakpo and Darwin Nunez after the FA Cup defeat to Manchester United before the break after all three appeared to pick up niggles in the 120-minute encounter.

However, Luis Diaz has still gone away with the Colombia national team and concerns over the severity of his groin issue have since been played down. Meanwhile, Gakpo too is on Netherlands duty and there has been no more word on a potentially twisted ankle.

Only Darwin Nunez from the trio has been left out of his national team's squad this month and it remains to be seen how badly he has re-aggravated the hamstring issue that forced him to miss four games last month.

Diogo Jota is not expected to return to the fold until April.

Predicted Liverpool starting XI vs Manchester City

(4-3-3): Kelleher; Bradley, Konate, Van Dijk, Robertson; Szoboszlai, Endo, Mac Allister; Salah, Gakpo, Diaz

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