Brentford vs Liverpool
| Monday, January 2nd |
Premier League | Gtech Community Stadium
8PM BST / 3PM EST
Happy new year and welcome to even more football, constantly, all the time. Just three days after deservedly beating Leicester in the most hilarious fashion, Liverpool are up again, this time traveling to West London to take on Brentford.
It’s been a solid first half of the year for the Bees, who, after finishing 13th in their Premier League debut season, now sit 10th in the table, just five points behind tomorrow’s visitors. After beating West Ham on Friday, and having drawn 3-3 against the Reds in the corresponding fixture last year, given Liverpool’s current struggles, Thomas Frank’s team will be looking to go one better this time around.
Top scorer and problematic gambly boi Ivan Toney could miss out after picking up a knock to the knee earlier in the week, centre-back Kristoffer Ajer is back in training but unlikely to return from his own knee injury in time, and full-back Aaron Hickey has been ruled out, but otherwise, the Brentford manager can call on his full squad.
Projected Liverpool Lineup (4-3-3)
Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Konaté, van Dijk, Robertson; Fabinho, Keïta, Thiago; Carvalho, Núñez, Salah
For the Reds, a return to the starting XI for Ibrahima Konaté feels likely, particularly if Toney recovers in time, while Kostas Tsimikas could replace Andrew Robertson, who suffered a dead leg on Friday. Trent Alexander-Arnold and Virgil van Dijk start.
In midfield, Fabinho should be reinstated after becoming a father during the Leicester game, but Curtis Jones and James Milner are closing in on returns, although unlikely in time for this match. Jordan Henderson struggled on Friday and might get a rest, with Naby Keïta the likely replacement. Harvey Elliott picked up a painful knock to his left ankle and may be unavailable, and Thiago might not be ready to go 90 minutes twice in three days. Stefan Bajcetic remains the wildcard.
Up top, Darwin Núñez and Mohamed Salah continue to start, as Diogo Jota and Luis Díaz are still months away, but Roberto Firmino could be fit to play again. Fabio Carvalho and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain remain options on the left flank, while the match likely comes too soon for new signing Cody Gakpo to be involved.
What the Managers Said
Jürgen Klopp: “.”
Thomas Frank: “Liverpool is a fantastic team, with a fantastic manager. It doesn’t really matter when you face Liverpool - they are always good. Under the floodlights at the Gtech, we’ll come flying out and do everything we can to get the three points.“
Referee: Stuart Attwell
Assistant referees: Darren Cann, Harry Lennard
Fourth official: Simon Hooper
VAR: Darren England, Mark Scholes
Kickoff is set for 8PM GMT/3PM EST tomorrow, and television listings for the match can be found on LiveSoccerTV.
In the meantime, and as always, 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.