The litmus test of Liverpool’s title credentials will be on display when they face defending champions Manchester City away at the Etihad on Thursday night, in one of the most anticipated Premier League games in recent history.
The Reds are currently seven points ahead of the Cityzens going into this game, however, the win for the latter could cut the gap and ramp up the pressure in this year’s title race.
On the other hand, if Jurgen Klopp’s men manage to avoid defeat in this game, then they would surely have the belief to go all the way this season.
The game will have plenty of sub-plots with people expecting this one to be contradictory of what we witnessed at Anfield in October. It is because the pressure is greater, especially with the home team aiming to close down a seven-point deficit.
That leaves us with a prospect of City attacking the Reds, which in turn provides Liverpool with an opportunity to play on the counter, in which they are one of the best.
Here’s how Klopp could line his team up tomorrow:
He has been impressive from the first game. The Brazilian is expected to be busy against City.
RB: Trent Alexander-Arnold
The youngster is fully fit now and will be relishing another challenge against Leroy Sane.
CB: Dejan Lovren
With Joel Matip and Joe Gomez out, the manager has less options at the back. Lovren starts every game, and the Croat has been doing well.
CB: Virgil van Dijk
One of the first names on Klopp’s teamsheet, without any doubt.
LB: Andy Robertson
The Scot is a machine at left-back. He will be tested against Raheem Sterling after a busy festive period.
The defensive solidity of Fabinho in a deeper midfield role could be key for Liverpool against Guardiola’s side.
CM: Georginio Wijnaldum
The Dutchman has been one of the best midfielders for the Reds this season. His ball retention and protection in tight areas will be vital.
CM: Jordan Henderson
The captain can start in a slightly advanced midfield role, something that worked well alongside Fabinho against Wolves.
RW: Mohamed Salah
The Egyptian could return to the right-hand side of attack, with Liverpool reverting to the 4-3-3 system.
ST: Roberto Firmino
With the possible change of system in mind, we may see Firmino leading the line as a false nine.
LW: Sadio Mane
The Senegalese star is ever-present on the left-hand side of attack if the 4-3-3 system is deployed.