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Liverpool vs Watford: Reds match preview, injuries and predicted lineup

Liverpool play host to Watford at Anfield.

Table toppers Liverpool welcome current bottom of the table side Watford to the Anfield in match-day 17 of the 2019/20 Premier League season.


Given the number of games already played this year, plus the Club World Cup competition coming up for the Reds, Jurgen Klopp will be forced into making quite a number of changes to his side to keep them fresh, and so predicting his exact lineup will be a headache.

Klopp is getting really short of centre-back options going into the busy festive period after losing yet another defender – Dejan Lovren, to a muscle injury. Meaning Virgil van Dijk will partner Joe Gomez at the heart of the Liverpool defence.

The Liverpool boss also brushed aside rumours of an injury to Sadio Mane, Joe Gomez and van Dijk, after they where missing in training on Thursday, insisting the trio were simply involved in a special recovery session after their back-to-back games in the Premier League and Champions League.

After series of changes made to his starting lineup in match-day 15 and 16, we can expect even more changes and rotation from Klopp, with only four players – van Dijk, Lovren, James Milner and Andrew Robertson making the starting xi on both occasion.

The Reds boss will be looking at utilizing James Milner in any of the full-back roles for the game against Watford this weekend and also possibly against Monterrey or Al-Sadd in the Club World Cup on Wednesday.

The forced change in full-back role sterns from the fact that Robertson has started six straight competitive games since the last international break, while Trent Alexander-Arnold is only one yellow-card away from a ban that would devastatingly see him miss the vital top-of-the-table clash with Leicester City on Boxing Day.

Further forward, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Adam Lallana are much fresher options for Klopp in midfield and attack, with other options such as Naby Keita and Jordan Henderson perhaps needing rest after back-to-back games in a short space of time.

Leading the attack, Klopp may be forced to tweak the trio of Robert Firmino, Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane, with fresher options in Divock Origi and Xherdan Shaqiri likely to shine against a defensively poor Watford side this season.

Dejan Lovren (muscle), Joel Matip (knee) and Fabinho (ankle) will miss the visit of Watford.

Predicted lineup [4-3-3]

Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Gomez, van Dijk, Robertson; Chamberlain, Henderson, Wijnaldum; Salah, Firmino, Mane.


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