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Leeds v Liverpool: Predicted XI

Liverpool face Leeds at Elland Road on Sunday and there is a possibility that a few players will be absent due to a debate with Brazil's FA. So who do we think Klopp will start?

Liverpool will face Marcelo Bielsa's Leeds side in front of a packed out Elland Road for the first time in a long time.

It will not be an easy game and it's already been made harder by the fact that the Brazilian FA and FIFA are having a hissy fit over Premier League clubs not sending Brazilian players to international duty.

Roberto Firmino in action for Brazil

This could impact the game massively with Fabinho and Alisson potentially missing out for Liverpool and Raphinha for Leeds.

Despite this uncertainty around the Liverpool team, our writers are going to have a shot at predicting what starting 11 Jurgen Klopp will choose.


Harry Miller

Caoimhín Kelleher;

Trent Alexander-Arnold, Joel Matip, Virgil van Dijk, Andy Robertson;

Thiago, Jordan Henderson, Naby Keïta;

Mohamed Salah, Diogo Jota, Sadio Mane;


The Brazilian FA have stopped any chance of Liverpool fielding a full strength team but the team that can be put out should be strong enough to grab all three points.

Alisson being unavailable leaves Adrian or Caoimhín Kelleher to be the starting keeper with the latter being more likely. The young man between the sticks has shown he can perform on the big stage when needed in his past appearances which makes him an excellent option. 

Caoimhin Kelleher

The defensive four basically pick themselves at this stage and will probably be the starting quartet until an injury disturbs their consistency. 

This midfield three I have chosen have never started a competitive match together but seem to be the only trio that are available. An injury to Harvey Elliott rules him out and the Brazilian FA rule out Fabinho from contention. 

Thiago and Naby Keita have enough creativity to rival Albert Einstein and the Wright Brothers combined which could easily pick apart the leaky Leeds defence. Also, Henderson will be there. 

Naby Keita

A front three of Mo Salah, Diogo Jota and Sadio Mané is bound to provide goals in the boatloads. Each player has already opened up their goal scoring tally this season and it doesn’t look like Leeds will be able to contain their attacking ability.

If the starting team can’t get the job done this Sunday then the options off of the bench to make a difference range from Kostas Tsmikas to maybe Konaté. It’s bleak on the bench.


Omer Cayir

Alisson;

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Trent Alexander-Arnold, Joel Matip, Virgil van Dijk, Andy Robertson;

Jordan Henderson, Fabinho, Thiago;

Mohamed Salah, Diogo Jota, Sadio Mane


I’m going to go out on a limb here and assume that the ban on our Brazilian players gets overturned. It seems absolutely absurd for FIFA to ban a select set of Premier league players from playing for their clubs whilst Richarlison is free to play for Everton. To be honest, the whole situation seems a farce and I do not understand the logic behind their decision. 

With that in mind, Alisson and Fabinho come into the team, both men are invaluable to how we play, especially in what I expect to be an extremely physical and intense encounter with Leeds United. 

Jordan Henderson Anfield

The back four chooses itself at the moment and I can see Jordan Henderson flanking Fabinho with Thiago in the midfield. After such a turbulent week in Guinea for Naby Keita, I cannot see him starting the match. 

Harvey Elliott picked up a knock whilst on international duty for England Under 21’s, so I am unsure how fit he will be to start this game. 

Just like the defence, the forward line also picks itself with Roberto Firmino seemingly ruled out of the fixture.


Tom Johnson

Caoimhín Kelleher;

Trent Alexander-Arnold, Joel Matip, Virgil van Dijk, Andy Robertson;

Jordan Henderson, Harvey Elliott, Thiago; 

Mohamed Salah, Diogo Jota, Sadio Mane


With Liverpool’s Brazilian trio likely being ruled out of the trip to Elland Road, Jurgen Klopp will be forced into some changes from the side that drew with Chelsea last time out. 

With Alisson Becker ineligible, Caiomhim Kelleher can take his place between the sticks, having impressed in recent outings. The young Irishman undoubtedly has the attributes to be the long-term number one for the Reds. 

Joel Matip

As for the back four, this arguably picks itself with the above quartet having performed exceptionally together in recent weeks. The midweek clash with AC Milan could be the chance to rest Joel Matip to protect his fitness, however his starting spot should remain intact for this one.

Fabinho will likely miss the Burnley game after the tragic death of his father.

In the engine room with Liverpool’s Brazilian shield Fabinho absent in the number 6 role, Jurgen Klopp can turn to the ever-reliable Jordan Henderson as a competent deputy. Just in front of him, Harvey Elliott deserves the chance to build upon his excellent form of late, while Thiago starts in need of added match sharpness ahead of a hectic upcoming schedule.

In the forward line, Diogo Jota will unquestionably replace the injured Roberto Firmino. Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane are shoo-ins either side of him.