With just two days between their league game on Saturday and Tuesday’s EFL Cup tie against Tottenham Hotspur, Liverpool will be looking to continue their strong run of form while making a number of changes to their starting lineup. Based on their absence over the weekend with the U23s, all of Danny Ings, Marko Grujic, Kevin Stewart, Ovie Ejaria, and Trent Alexander-Arnold are possibilities.
So too will be the likes of Daniel Sturridge, Lucas Leiva, and Ragnar Klavan. Certainly not all will start, but a few will. And a few more will at least be expected to make the bench. The expectation is similar for Spurs, who themselves will only be two days removed from a game—a nil-nil draw with Bournemouth—and whose manager, Mauricio Pochettino, has already spoken of the need to rest and rotate.
For their part, Tottenham—who beat Gillingham of League One to get to this stage of the compeition—also have the Champions League to worry about, which for the London club could lead to an even more heavily changed side than Liverpool’s. The winner of Tuesday’s cup tie will head to the fifth round of the competition, set for the week of November 28th. The semi-finals then follow in January.
For Liverpool (4-3-3)
Clyne, Lovren, Klavan, Milner
Grujic, Lucas, Wijnaldum
Lallana, Origi, Ings
Beyond the fact that Simon Mignolet will start, any attempt to predict changes tends to quickly run into a problem: all things being equal, Jürgen Klopp isn’t big on change for its own sake. If players need to be rested they will be, but if the likes of Nathaniel Clyne and James Milner aren’t overly tired from their exertions, they won’t be given the night off. Changes seem certain. But aren’t likely to be wholesale.
It could be Clyne and Milner will swap out while the centre half pairing remains the same. Or Clyne and Milner rest while Klavan comes in. In midfield, having played a lot following his return from injury, Emre Can seems certain to sit. Adam Lallana might seem a likely candidate for a rest, too, but despite having evolved into the first name on Klopp’s teamsheet, his minutes have been managed such that he stands just ninth in total minutes played.
After his late cameo against West Brom, Gini Wijnaldum returning to the starting eleven is probably a safe bet, though. In fact, he might be the closest thing to a lock to start amongst all the outfield players. In front of him, meanwhile, it seems certain at least one of Daniel Sturridge, Divock Origi, and Danny Ings will start. Yet beyond that, it’s a guessing game.
Kickoff is set for 7:45PM BST/2:45PM EST on Tuesday, with the game set to be carried live in the UK on Sky Sports 1 and Sky Go, and in the United States on beIN Sports and go90's online streaming service. Full listings for tomorrow’s EFL Cup tie as well as all other upcoming Liverpool games can be found at LivesoccerTV.
As match approaches, we'll keep you updated with all the buildup to the game, including team news as it's released, our live matchday thread and post-match recaps from The Liverpool Offside staff. If you want to join the discussion, sign up for an SB Nation account to have your say on the action as it happens.