Manchester City host Liverpool on Tuesday in their eagerly anticipated UEFA Champions League quarterfinal second leg.
Jurgen Klopp‘s men have a 3-0 advantage from the first leg at Anfield following their stunning first half display, while City and Pep Guardiola will be reeling from two-straight defeats as they lost 3-2 to Manchester United at the weekend after leading 2-0 at half time as they looked set to seal the Premier League title.
Both Klopp and Guardiola rested several key players for their games at the weekend with Tuesday in mind, and it will be intriguing to see how Liverpool set up and if they alter their attack-minded, high-pressing philosophy which has served them so well.
Here’s a look at how both teams could line up for the huge clash at the Etihad.
—– Ederson —–
—- Walker —- Kompany —- Otamendi —- Laporte —-
—– Fernandinho —–
—- Sterling —- De Bruyne —- Silva —- Sane —-
—– Aguero —–
Guardiola has to go for it from the start and that could mean Kyle Walker either playing as a right-sided center back or even as a right-wing back in a 3-4-3 formation. Leaving three defenders on three Liverpool attackers would be a bold move, even for Guardiola. We should expect the usual suspects in attack for City with Sterling, De Bruyne, Silva and Sane in support of Aguero. City will look to score early and often against Liverpool. Simple, right?
—– Karius —–
—- Alexander-Arnold —- Van Dijk —- Lovren —- Robertson —-
—- Wijnaldum —- Milner —- Oxlade-Chamberlain —-
—- Salah —- Firmino —- Mane —-
This is without doubt one of the toughest team selections for Klopp. He is hamstrung by plenty of injury problems but it appears he may well risk playing Mohamed Salah who hobbled off with a groin problem in the win over City last Wednesday. In defense he will likely start with Lovren and Van Dijk in the center (Matip and Gomez are out injured) and will be hoping Robertson is back from injury at left back. With Jordan Henderson out through suspension and both Adam Lallana and Emre Can out with injuries, his options in midfield are limited with the Ox, Wijnaldum and Milner near certainties to start. The formation will likely stay the same as always, 4-3-3, but don’t be surprised if Trent Alexander-Arnold or Nathaniel Clyne are deployed slightly further forward in a more defensive setup. Clyne made his first start of the season at Everton at the weekend and it may be a lot to ask him to play another full 90 on Tuesday, but Liverpool are down to the bare bones in certain positions. It would be a big call to start Danny Ings or Dominic Solanke out wide after a grueling 90 minutes for the back-up strikers against Everton, but maybe Ings’ extra experience (over Solanke) could see him get the nod out wide if Salah isn’t fit enough to start?