Liverpool To Make 1 Change, Duo Ruled Out: Team News & Predicted XI vs Hoffenheim
Here is the latest team news and a predicted starting eleven ahead of Liverpool’s crucial Champions League play off first leg clash at Hoffenheim.
Liverpool will look to take a huge step towards qualification to the group stages of the Champions League when they take on Hoffenheim on Tuesday night.
The Reds are in Germany for the first leg of their play-off and Jurgen Klopp will be desperate to take home a positive result ahead of the return leg at Anfield next week.
The German coach held a pre-match press conference this evening and he gave an update on the situation surrounding Philippe Coutinho and Daniel Sturridge.
Coutinho missed Liverpool’s opening Premier League draw at Watford on Saturday due to an apparent back injury and the Brazilian international didn’t travel with the rest of the squad to German today.
The 25-year-old handed in a transfer request on Friday in order to try and push through a move to Barcelona but Klopp refused to be drawn on the playmaker’s future, simply telling reporters he’s not available for selection right now.
Klopp told Liverpoolfc.com;
“Nothing has changed in the last few days, not on the one side, not on the other side,”
“He is not available for us in the moment, that’s the main issue if you want. He cannot play for Liverpool in this moment and, how everybody can imagine, that’s quite a blow for us.
“We’ve known for a few days about it so we can prepare this game without him.”
The Liverpool boss will also be without Sturridge once again as the striker is still recovering from a thigh injury that he sustained against Bayern Munich during pre-season.
However, Klopp has confirmed Sturridge is close to full fitness and should be back in contention for the Merseysiders league clash with Crystal Palace at Anfield on Saturday.
Klopp told Liverpoolfc.com:
“He [Sturridge] is in a good way. We had a talk this morning and he was really close, he looked good yesterday. Two more sessions and he will be available for the weekend.”
Coutinho and Sturridge join Adam Lallana in missing the Hoffenheim game as the midfielder is still recovering from a thigh strain so Emre Can should continue in midfield alongside Gini Wijnaldum and Jordan Henderson.
Nathaniel Clyne is also still unavailable due to a hamstring injury so youngster Trent Alexandre-Arnold should get another chance to impress in the right-back spot tomorrow night.
Otherwise, the Liverpool squad is in good shape so the only change I think we’ll see to the eleven that drew at Watford is James Milner coming in for Alberto Moreno at left-back.
Here is the side I think we’ll see Klopp go with:
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