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A debut for Kabak or Davies? How Liverpool could line up against Manchester City

Jurgen Klopp could hand a start to one of his January signings in his side's crucial Premier League clash with the league leaders

 
8:00am on Saturday 6th February 2021
By
Team FC

Jurgen Klopp could hand debuts to January signings Ozan Kabak and Ben Davies when league-leaders Manchester City travel to Anfield on Sunday afternoon.

The reigning champions have been decimated by injuries throughout their title defence. All three centre-backs who started the campaign - Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez and Joel Matip - are now ruled out for the rest of the season through their respective issues, which forced the Reds into the transfer market this winter.

Midfielders Fabinho and Jordan Henderson have filled in admirably during 2020/21, but Klopp has been left with no choice but to strengthen his backline in the winter window.

The disappointing defeat last time out versus Brighton has left Liverpool seven points behind their upcoming opponents, having played a game more than Pep Guardiola's charges.

Anything other than the three points over the weekend could mean an early end to the Reds' title tilt and would significantly strengthen City's place at the top of the table.

Alisson is expected to have recovered from an illness that saw him miss the Brighton game in time to start between the sticks for Klopp's men, and the Brazilian shot-stopper could be in for a busy afternoon.

The full-back positions will be occupied by Andy Roberston and Trent Alexander-Arnold, with the duo likely to be flanking an unfamiliar combination in the heart of defence.

Klopp now has several options at centre-back, but he's likely to stick with the reliable Fabinho and hand Kabak his first start, given the former Schalke defender has experience playing at a higher level than Davies.

Summer-signing Thiago could start in the holding role to try and give Liverpool some control over proceedings, while Henderson is likely to be moved back into a more familiar midfield position.

Netherlands international Georginio Wijnaldum should make up the midfield trio behind Liverpool's usual front-three of Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino.

Liverpool predicted XI against Manchester City

Liverpool - Football tactics and formations

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