| Sunday, January 5th |
FA Cup | Anfield
4:01PM GMT/11:01AM EST
The FA Cup 3rd round kicks off with a bang for Liverpool as their blue neighbors make the trip down the road. The Toffees likely weren’t pleased at the opportunity to lose out on their last hope for silverware at Anfield on Sunday. The only thing that might give Everton fans hope is Klopp making it clear that he does not prioritize the FA Cup as much as the Premier League and the Champions League.
There’s a good chance that Klopp will field a highly rotated team from the one that beat Sheffield United on Thursday. The biggest question mark for Liverpool fans will be whether new player Takumi Minamino gets any minutes in this match.
Klopp has proven himself a master of the art of rotation, combining experienced players with young ones to provide a balance to the team. Divock Origi has molded himself into an Evertonian boogeyman, so it’s likely we’ll see him back in the line-up on Sunday.
Since their most recent humiliation at Anfield last month, Everton has gone through several changes, acquiring manager Carlo Ancelotti to try and salvage their season. They got knocked out of the Carabao Cup and lost midweek against Manchester City, but their other results have been more positive. They beat Chelsea and drew with both Manchester United and Arsenal in the league. They currently sit at 11th on the table, which is a huge improvement to their place in the relegation zone when they sacked Marco Silva.
They’ll have an uphill battle, having not won at Anfield since 1999. The biggest concern that Klopp will have, on the other hand, is the Blues getting a draw and forcing a replay at across Stanley Park.
Projected Liverpool Lineup (4-3-3)
Adrian; Williams, Gomez, Van Dijk, Milner; Lallana, Henderson, Wijnaldum; Mane, Origi, Salah
Trying to predict this line-up is a fool’s errand, and it’s anyone’s guess who Klopp will choose to rest and how strong of a team he’ll put out. He’ll have to balance the visceral importance of a Merseyside derby with the need to keep pushing on in other competitions.
Rhian Brewster will be involved somehow, as per the boss. Whether he’ll start on the pitch or on the bench remains to be seen.
Several players will definitely be out of contention for the Reds. Naby Keita went off injured on Thursday during the Sheffield United game and will not be available for selection. Also unavailable will be Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Joel Matip, Dejan Lovren, Xherdan Shaqiri, and Fabinho. They’re all on their way to recovery, but won’t be risked for this match.
What the Managers Had to Say
Jurgen Klopp: “People have told me already a couple of times I wouldn’t respect the cup competitions but that is not true. But my first job is to respect the players, my absolutely number one job. I see them every day, every second, I see them all the time and I have to make a decision is it allowed to bring them again or not?”
Carlo Ancelotti: “Every derby is a special game. I know how different this game is. Of course Liverpool is the favourite, but in a derby you never know what is going on.
Referee: Jonathan Moss Assistants: Dan Cook & Marc Perry Fourth official: Martin Atkinson Martin Atkinson VAR: Chris Kavanagh
Kickoff is set for 4:01PM GMT/11:01AM EST tomorrow, and television listings for the match can be found on LiveSoccerTV. In the meantime, we’ll be keeping 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.