By 90Min
September 13, 2019

So far so good for Liverpool. They are the only side in the Premier League to have won their opening four games, and appear ready to challenge Manchester City for the title once more.

This weekend they return to league action, facing off against Newcastle United at Anfield. It seems a relatively comfortable fixture on paper, but Steve Bruce's side did cause a major shock in their last away game, beating Tottenham 1-0 to earn their first win of the season. Any hint of complacency from Liverpool could leave them vulnerable to a similar upset.

The Champions League also begins in midweek, with Liverpool starting the defence of their crown with a tricky trip to Napoli. With this in mind, Jurgen Klopp will have to consider how much rotation is needed to allow his squad to perform in both games.

Here is how 90min expects the side to line-up this weekend.


Goalkeepers & Defenders

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Adrian (GK) - First choice goalkeeper Alisson has returned to light training after suffering a calf injury on the opening day of the season against Norwich. However, he is set to miss out once more this weekend, leaving Adrian to deputise for him once more.

Trent Alexander-Arnold (RB) - The 20-year-old remains one of the best attacking full backs in the league. He may well come under pressure for a starting berth in midweek, as Joe Gomez could be preferred for his defensive qualities against Napoli. Yet in this game, where Liverpool will likely control possession for long periods, Alexander-Arnold should get the nod.

Joel Matip (CB) - The Cameroon international continues to go from strength to strength. He finished last season in fine form, and has maintained his consistency in the current campaign, starting Liverpool's last three league games. With the team keeping a clean sheet last time out against Burnley, he should hold off Gomez once more to stay in the side.

Virgil van Dijk (CB) - Not much to say here. If he is fit - he plays. The standout centre back in the league over the past season, and Klopp will not even consider resting him here.

Andrew Robertson (LB) - Liverpool have a lack of alternatives at left back, meaning that Robertson will not be rotated for this game. Despite having a troublesome time on international duty with Scotland, the full back continues to shine at Anfield, and will likely be a thorn in Newcastle's side this weekend.


Midfielders

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Fabinho (DM) - One of the best holding midfielders in the league right now. Klopp may consider resting him here with midweek in mind, but given that the Brazilian was not particularly busy over the international break, making just one substitute appearance, so he should be fine to start.

Jordan Henderson (CM) - The captain should start once more, having done so for Liverpool's four previous Premier League games. Liverpool do have alternatives available if Klopp wants to give him a break, but Henderson is known for his energetic displays, so he should get the nod to lead the side again.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (CM) - This could be the kind of game in which Oxlade-Chamberlain shines. Having missed much of last season through injury, he has made an impressive return by featuring in Liverpool's last three league games. Klopp will likely opt for the discipline of Georginio Wijnaldum or James Milner against Napoli, but for this home contest with Newcastle it is Oxlade-Chamberlain who should start.


Forwards

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Mohamed Salah (RW) - The Egyptian winger did not play for his national side over the international break, so he will be fresh for this fixture. With three goals and two assists in the opening four games of the season he is flying once more, and will be licking his lips at the prospect of facing Newcastle's vulnerable defence this weekend.

Sadio Mane (LW) - On the opposite flank will be Mane. The pair did appear to fall out during Liverpool's win over Burnley prior to the international break, with Mane seemingly angry at Salah for not passing to him. That now seems to have been forgotten though, meaning it is almost a certainty that Mane will operate down the left wing, looking to add to his two league goals so far this season.

Roberto Firmino (ST) - Arguably Liverpool's best performer so far this campaign. He has often been in Salah and Mane's shadow over the past two seasons, but now he is being appreciated for the exceptional striker that he is. He already has two goals and two assists in the Premier League this season, and he will fancy adding to that tally this weekend.

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