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Liverpool vs. Fulham: Preview, Team News, and Ways to Watch

An injury-riddled Reds squad attempts to take the first step towards another Wembley appearance.

Liverpool FC v Fulham FC - Premier League Photo by Nick Taylor/Liverpool FC/Liverpool FC via Getty Images

Liverpool vs Fulham

| Wednesday, January 10th |
Carabao Cup | Anfield

After knocking title pretenders Arsenal out of the FA Cup on Sunday, Liverpool attempt to make it to the final of England’s other domestic cup, as they host Fulham in the first leg of the Carabao Cup semi-final.

It’s been an inconsistent season thus far for the Cottagers, and although they seemingly spent the Aleksandr Mitrovic money well this summer, recruiting Raúl Jiménez, Calvin Bassey, Alex Iwobi and Timothy Castagne, they have not been able to replicate the sorts of results that saw them finish 10th last year.

5-0 wins have been followed by 0-3 losses, and although they’ve recently lost to the likes of Burnley and Bournemouth, Fulham are currently on a winning streak, owing to consecutive one-goal victories over Arsenal and Rotherham.

The Reds ran out 4-3 winners the last time the two teams faced off at the start of December, owing to a series of incredible long-range goals and a late decider from Trent Alexander-Arnold.

Marco Silva will have to make do without Bassey, Iwobi and Fodé Ballo-Touré, as the trio have been called up to the African Cup of Nations, while Adama Traoré remains unavailable with a hamstring injury.

Projected Liverpool Lineup (4-3-3)

Kelleher; Bradley, Konaté, Quansah, Gomez; Mac Allister, Jones, Elliott; Jota, Darwin, Díaz

Fulham are not the only team in the matchup affected by international tournaments, of course, as Liverpool will have to manage the absences of Mohamed Salah and Wataru Endo as best they can, with the pair participating in the AfCoN and the AFC Asian Cup, respectively. Nonetheless, with the Carabao Cup reachin the semi-final stage and the next game 11 days away, expect a strong starting XI.

There are a number of injuries to deal with, as Trent Alexander-Arnold has joined Andrew Robertson and Kostas Tsimikas on the full-back treatment table, leaving Joe Gomez and Conor Bradley just about guaranteed to start tomorrow night. Virgil van Dijk is reportedly back to full fitness after missing the Arsenal game through illness, but starts for Ibrahima Konaté and Jarell Quansah are still definitely on the table. Caoimhín Kelleher starts in goal.

In midfield, Alexis Mac Allister has recovered just in time to replace Endo, while Dominik Szoboszlai’s hamstring issue opens the door for Curtis Jones and Harvey Elliott partnering the Argentinian. Ryan Gravenberch is a dark horse to start.

Up top, there is no Mohamed Salah, but the Luis Díaz experiment on the right wing worked well enough against Arsenal and may be repeated here. Diogo Jota and Darwin Núñez can alternate between the central striker role and the left flank, while Cody Gakpo remains an option if increased possession control is wanted.

What the Managers Said

Pep Lijnders: “We all dream when we are young. You want to play in the most iconic stadiums in the world, and Wembley is one of them – it has so much history, so many memories we already made there. So you want to go there. I think the team has this hunger. It’s the closest final we can reach. But we have to respect Fulham.”

Marco Silva: “It’s a great challenge for us, no doubt. It’s a big pride for us to be there, to achieve something that the Club never achieved. But we want more.”

The Officials

Referee: David Coote
Assistant referees: Tim Wood, Wade Smith
Fourth official: Tim Robinson

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.

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