Liverpool have a chance to win silverware tomorrow when they take on Chelsea, in the League Cup final at Wembley. We take a look at how Jürgen Klopp could line his side up for the momentous encounter.

For a match preview, you can head over here:

Diogo Jota is expected to be named in the squad after recovering from an ankle complaint, but Roberto Firmino has been ruled out with an adductor injury. The Brazilian is the only injury absentee, with everyone else fit and available.

In goal, Klopp has already confirmed Caoimhin Kelleher will start. The youngster has played in all but two of the games in the run to the final and deserves the chance to see the job through. It’s a huge show of faith by the manager and it is one that could work one of two ways.

If we win, it would be a masterstroke and a sign of a coach who has complete confidence in his squad. If we lose, Kelleher will be scrutinised and the goal/goals conceded will be forensically analysed and pored over with the question raised as to whether Alisson would have saved it.

Whichever way it goes, you can’t help but admire Klopp’s loyalty to his players. Kelleher hasn’t let anyone down all season and was in goal against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge last month with Alisson out through Covid.

He conceded two goals but both were pretty much unsaveable. He bailed the side on two occasions; diving at Pulisic’s feet early on when left one on one with the American, and then late in the game when he made a point blank save from Havert’s header.

Tomorrow is a huge game for the 23 year old, but he’s yet to show any sign of nerves in his young Liverpool career. The fact that he’s saved a number of penalties already also helps. If the game does travel to a penalty shootout, you’d be more confident with him in goal than Alisson.

In the backline, there’s only one real decision to make. Trent, Robbo and Virgil are guaranteed to start. The only slight dilemma is in choosing one of Matip or Konaté. Last week, I was sure Ibou would start, primarily to deal with Lukaku.

The Belgian is unlikely to start however, with his form and confidence all over the place after the record breaking seven touches he managed in 90 minutes against Crystal Palace. That coupled with Matip’s excellent showing and goal against Leeds tips the scale in Joel’s favour.

In midfield, it’s also pretty straightforward. Fabinho, Thiago and Henderson seem the obvious choice. Fabinho and Thiago’s partnership has proven unbeatable so far and the Spanish technician is in excellent form at the minute. The skipper has also been fantastic over the past fortnight, after a tough outing at Turf Moor.

Kovacic and Kanté ran the show when these two sides battled to a 2-2 draw last month, so Klopp’s midfield selection has to be spot on. The game will likely be won or lost in the middle of the park. The likes of Milner, Jones, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Keita and Elliott are the other options available.

With five subs available in the Carabao Cup, we could well see a number of them come on. The manager has been credited with making game changing subs in recent weeks, and he will be hoping for more of the same here. Having a strong squad certainly helps in that regard.

In attack, Jota’s return poses a question for the gaffer. Does he throw Diogo straight in? The Portuguese slotter wasn’t in team training yesterday and hasn’t played since sustaining an ankle injury in the first half against Inter Milan.

It is therefore unlikely he is fit enough to start. It sounds more like he’s willing to push through the pain barrier because it’s a final. As such, I expect him to start on the bench. He will be the ace in Klopp’s back pocket.

Luis Diaz is therefore set to start in a final, just about a month into his Liverpool career. The Colombian has hit the ground running since his switch from Porto, and will pose a huge threat to Reece James (who hasn’t played for three months) or Azpilicueta.

Jürgen has been working on the front three for the final since Jota and Bobby sustained injuries at the San Siro. He’s played Mané through the middle with Diaz and Mo either side. It’s been a work in progress for Sadio as he adapts to the new role.

He’s scored three goals in the two games playing as the central striker and that can only bode well for tomorrow. It also helps that Chelsea are his second favourite opponents. Salah will start on the right as usual and look to square up Alonso at every chance.

He skinned the Spaniard at Stamford Bridge to score a stunning goal, and with Chilwell still out injured will get the chance to take him on again. Alonso is a talented player going forward, but lacks pace and defensive awareness.

That right there is a weakness to target. With Mo in dazzling form, expect him to have a huge say in how this final goes. The manager has another headache in naming his bench. He has to leave out three members of his squad as only nine can be named on the bench.

It’s a very tough decision as Klopp faces the prospect of dropping players who contributed massively to reaching the final in the first place. Taki Minamino is the side’s topscorer in the competition and surely has to make the squad.

Origi can’t be left out either as he’s made for big occasions, you wouldn’t put it past him to come on and net a late winner. I think it’ll come down to experience. That will unfortunately see Jones and Elliott miss out. Gomez is also likely to miss out, with Konaté the preferred option.

Predicted team:

Kelleher, Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Van Dijk, Robertson, Fabinho, Henderson, Thiago, Salah, Mané, Diaz.

Subs: Alisson, Konaté, Tsimikas, Milner, Keita, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Minamino, Jota, Origi.



  1. I still think Konate will start ahead of Matip,chelsea will look to always play balls behind the high line and his pace could come in handy. Klopp has used Konate in such games this season .

    Also cmon Matip has played a lot in the last week .

    So Konate slots in for me .

    Liked by 2 people

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