Liverpool starting lineup to face Burnley – predicted

Liverpool need a reaction when they face Burnley at Anfield on Saturday, following only their second defeat of the 2023/24 Premier League season.

The 3-1 reverse at the Emirates Stadium — and the performance that came with it — was a reminder to fans that the remaining three-and-a-half months of Jurgen Klopp's tenure will be a rollercoaster rather than a procession as the Reds continue to chase four trophies.

In truth, a home tie against 19th-placed Burnley is one of the kinder fixtures Liverpool could've asked for following a defeat.

Vincent Kompany's side have won just twice on the road all season and are ahead of only Sheffield United when it comes to both goals scored and goals conceded.

Still, a routine match like this becomes all the more important in context and Klopp needs to make sure his players don't turn one defeat into a blip, as Manchester City continue to hunt down first place with all the inevitability of the T-1000.

With questions over the defence and midfield and key players out, heres how Liverpool could line up this Saturday.


Goalkeeper & Defence

Football - FA Cup - 4th Round - Liverpool FC v Norwich City FC LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, January 28, 2024: Liverpool s captain Virgil van Dijk celebrates after scoring the fourth goal during the FA Cup 4th Round match between Liverpool FC and Norwich City FC at Anfield. Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda WIGAN DW Stadium LANCASHIRE ENGLAND PUBLICATIONxNOTxINxUK Copyright: xPropagandaxPhotoxAgencyx P2024-01-28-Liverpool_Norwich-81

With Ibrahima Konate suspended following his double booking at Arsenal, Klopp has a choice of either moving Joe Gomez into the middle or picking 20-year-old Jarell Quansah.

The academy graduate is perhaps the more likely choice to partner Virgil van Dijk, with Gomez seemingly preferred at left back. However, Andy Robertson may actually be in line for a first start since October here, following his return from a long layoff.

Trent Alexander-Arnold should continue at right back after returning to the team in Sunday's defeat. The vice-captain might've been into midfield to accommodate the in-form Conor Bradley. However, the 20-year-old was absent from the squad that lost in London, following the tragic passing of his father. Klopp promised to offer the youngster 'time and space' and it he appears set to miss this game too.

Alisson Becker will continue in goal.

Midfield

Wataru Endo

DOHA, QATAR - JANUARY 31: Wataru Endo of Japan during the AFC Asian Cup Round of 16 match between Bahrain and Japan at Al Thumama Stadium on January 31, 2024 in Doha, Qatar Bahrain v Japan: Round Of 16 - AFC Asian Cup Copyright: xx

Having spent a lot of the season with very few options for rotation in the middle, Liverpool suddenly have a bunch of contenders to stand in for the injured Dominik Szoboszlai.

While it's undoubtedly a nicer headache to have for Klopp, whether any of the replacements can replicate the Hungarian's industry and creativity remains to be seen.

Alexis Mac Allister moving forward into Szoboszlai's berth, with the returning Wataru Endo playing at the base of the midfield three seems like the most obvious solution, while Curtis Jones should continue on the left.

However, with Alexander-Arnold able to adopt a more advanced role and both Harvey Elliot and Ryan Gravenberch vying for more minutes, there are a number of ways Klopp could set up his engine room.

Thiago, however, is injured once again.

Attack

Bournemouth v Liverpool Premier League 21/01/2024. Darwin Nunez 9 of Liverpool warming up ahead of the Premier League match between Bournemouth and Liverpool at the Vitality Stadium, Bournemouth, England on 21 January 2024. Bournemouth Vitality Stadium Dorset England Editorial use only DataCo restrictions apply See www.football-dataco.com , Copyright: xGrahamxHuntx PSI-18861-0250

After being left out of the starting XI to face Arsenal as a pre-caution, Darwin Nuñez — who scored in the reverse fixture at Turf Moor — could come back into the lineup this weekend, with Cody Gakpo not convincing at the Emirates.

Expect Diogo Jota — the other scorer in the 2-0 win over Burnley on Boxing Day — and Luis Diaz to continue on either side of the Uruguayan, unless Mohamed Salah is deemed fit enough.

A series of mid-week gym selfies on Instagram from the Egyptian suggest he is nearing a return to action after three weeks out.

Predicted starting XI to face Burnley:

(4-3-3): Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Quansah, Van Dijk, Robertson; Endo, Mac Allister, Jones; Jota, Nuñez, Diaz

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