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Liverpool vs Chelsea: Predicted Line-Ups | Premier League

Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool welcome Thomas Tuchel's Chelsea to Anfield on Thursday, knowing a win would see the Reds jump into the Champions League positions.

Liverpool host Chelsea on Thursday with the winner of the match holding the upper hand in the race for the Champions League places.

Jurgen Klopp will be looking to do the league double over the Blues as he looks to put a poor run behind him in the hope that the Reds can reassert themselves as Champions League contenders.

The visitors will be no pushover, following the sacking of Frank Lampard, Thomas Tuchel has lead resurgence for the Londoners as they've risen up the table since his appointment at the end of January.

We asked the LFCTR Writers, who should start on Thursday. 

Stephen Killen

Phillips and Kabak to retain their place in the starting XI with Jones and Salah expected to shine

Ahead of Sunday's win over Sheffield United, I said Liverpool needed to switch formations. Evidently, I shouldn't become a manager as Jurgen Klopp made tweaks within the game that saw the side reinvigorated after a number of matches seemingly clueless when they had the ball in the final third.

With the news that Alisson, Fabinho and Diogo Jota returning to training coming as a boost I expect a few changes.

However, I think Liverpool should make one change from the win on at the weekend.

When called upon, the heavily scrutinised Adrian put in a good performance and earned a clean sheet. However, Alisson should return to the squad following his absence on compassionate grounds.

Back four should remain the same with Nat Phillips and Ozan Kabak in defence whilst Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson in the full-back positions.

Midfield three of Georginio Wijnaldum, Curtis Jones and Thiago put in a good performance with Jones grabbing a goal and the Dutchman putting in a decent display that saw his showing go under the radar as the 20-year-old Liverpudlian shone.

Roberto Firmino showed glimpses of good and bad, whilst Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane had bad days at the office but with the Egyptian coming up against his former employers, you would imagine he will look to add to his tally and extend his lead at the top of the goalscorers chart. 

Liverpool Starting XI (4-3-3): Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Phillips, Kabak, Robertson; Wijnaldum, Jones, Thiago; Salah, Firmino, Mane.


Will Morley

One change for the Reds

Although Liverpool returned to winning ways on Sunday, Chelsea will prove a sterner test than league strugglers, Sheffield United. With a host of players nearing matchday fitness, changes may be made.

Despite a relatively solid performance from Adrian at the weekend, Jurgen Klopp may opt for Alisson. However, that decision all hinges upon whether the Brazilian is mentally ready for such an important contest.

It looks like Fabinho will return to the matchday squad against Chelsea, albeit from the bench. To be on the safe side, Sunday's game against Fulham looks a more realistic return date. Therefore, I can see Ozan Kabak and Nathaniel Phillips starting at the back; after their solid defensive performance against Sheffield United.

For me, Klopp will start the same midfield as last time. Although Naby Keita may be nearing a highly-anticipated return, his long-term fitness is now of paramount importance. It is simply not worth risking yet another injury for the Guinean, whose frequent spells on the sidelines are starting to frustrate the Anfield faithful.

Likewise for Diogo Jota; expect Klopp to gradually ease him back to full fitness. The Reds have sorely missed him over the past few months and will hope to avoid another calamitous injury. Regardless, if the front three are on form, Liverpool should win.

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Liverpool Starting XI (4-3-3): Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Phillips, Kabak, Roberton; Jones, Wijnaldum, Thiago; Salah, Firmino, Mane


Danny Corcoran

Wijnaldum to continue as Liverpool captain with Keita swapping with Jones

I expect Klopp to make just two changes to the side that beat Sheffield United - despite Diogo Jota’s likely return to the squad. Alisson will come back into the side after a tough week for the Brazilian. 

While some may want Fabinho back in midfield, he is more likely to start alongside one of Kabak or Phillips in the heart of defence in order to deal with Chelsea’s attacking threat. I also anticipate a similar system to the one used at Bramall Lane that uses Alexander-Arnold as more of a third CB and pushes Robertson on to the left-wing. 

The midfield and attack will likely stay the same after some promising link-up play on Sunday night. 

Curtis Jones looks set to keep his place after another standout performance and Roberto Firmino will look to push on after a bright second half. 

Liverpool now have the added benefit of both Naby Keïta & Jota as options off the bench and I’d expect these two to be used at some point against Tuchel’s side.

Liverpool Starting XI (4-3-3): Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Phillips, Kabak, Roberton; Keita, Wijnaldum, Thiago; Salah, Firmino, Mane

Naby Keita in action against Aston Villa

Matt Thielen

Alisson replaces Adrian as the Liverpool team on a whole stays unchanged

With Alisson back in training, it is a no brainer or the Brazilian shot-stopper to slide back into the starting eleven. 

After Sunday's win over Sheffield United I believe that Ozan Kabak and Nat Phillips have earned another chance to play alongside one another. 

The full-backs pick themselves at this point, with Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson seemingly back to their best. However, it should be noted that the right-back acted as a third centre-back at times. 

Although Naby Keita made an appearance against Sheffield United, I do not believe that he gets the nod to start against Chelsea. 

The midfield will be the familiar trio of Gini Wijnaldum, Curtis Jones and Thiago Alcantara. However, I do think that Keita will make another appearance in the second half; especially if Jurgen Klopp's side are struggling with a low block. 

Much like the full-backs, the front three picks itself these days. Mohamed Salah is in the lead for the Premier League Golden Boot, Roberto Firmino is back on the score sheet and Sadio Mane is always unpredictable. 

With a "goal" against Sheffield United and a hungry Diogo Jota back in training, Klopp will look for Firmino to regain his form. 

Liverpool Starting XI (4-3-3): Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Phillips, Kabak, Roberton; Jones, Wijnaldum, Thiago; Salah, Firmino, Mane

Ozan Kabak in action for Liverpool