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Liverpool 2019-20 season preview – Time to land the big trophy

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Liverpool lift Champions League trophy

Liverpool opinion: 2019-20 season preview – Liverpool finally break their PL duck?

The feeling around Liverpool seems positive, but we have been here before too. The Champions League win in June ended a tough season on a high and was a fantastic reward for all the hard work done.

Jurgen Klopp has built an incredible team and finally won his first trophy as Liverpool manager, but it could have been sweeter.

Missing out on the Premier League crown by a single point will continue to hurt, especially after we lost just one game in the season.

Jurgen Klop lifts the Champions League trophy
Jurgen Klopp lifts the Champions League trophy

Liverpool bagged 97 points, had the best defence, two of the top scorers in the league and still missed out on the title.

That should be the aim for Klopp this season, and our performance in the Community Shield final proves we are still a fantastic side, even without any new first-team additions.

Harvey Elliott and Sepp van den Berg could feature at some point in the season but the return of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain could be a huge boost for us.

Adam Lallana looks fit and Naby Keita also looked good in the Community Shield defeat to Manchester City. They need to stay free from injuries and they could provide us with that extra something we missed in some games in the previous season.

Liverpool aren’t broke, so there isn’t a need to fix anything. The manager has seen the Reds grow in every season under him, and there is no reason to assume why a similar trend won’t take place next season.

Player to watch – Rhian Brewster

Letting Daniel Sturridge leave in the summer was a tough call given that he was fit for most of the campaign last season, but it seems there are high hopes on Rhian Brewster.

The English youngster missed major parts of the previous seasons due to injuries, but looked great in pre-season.

Rhian Brewster

The 19-year-old should play for the first-team at some point this season and could be the one to score some crucial goals.

Surprise performer – Adam Lallana

No need to throw the brickbats here, but Lallana could be a star in the deeper role.

The English midfielder has had a torrid time with injuries and only started five Premier League games in the previous campaign.

Adam Lallana

The former Saint is still one of the most technically gifted footballers we have in the squad, and if his passing range is topnotch, he can find a new lease of life in the Liverpool midfield.

Of course, all this depends on him staying fit and hopefully, he does not turn out to be the next Daniel Sturridge.

Top scorer – Sadio Mane

Salah has been excellent for the Reds over the past two years but last season, we saw Sadio Mane bag some important goals.

The former Saint was bagging some crucial goals when Salah was on a dry run, and he is one of the most dangerous attackers due to his pace and movement.

Sadio Mane
Sadio Mane

The Senegal international also took his team to the finals of the Africa Cup of Nations and was one of the Premier League’s top scorers in the previous campaign.

Salah looked dangerous against Manchester City on Sunday, but Mane could just edge out his fellow African in the goalscoring charts

Cup performances

The FA Cup and Carabao Cup journeys didn’t fare all that well last season with early eliminations but things could be different this time around.

The Reds might still rest some of their stars in the domestic competitions, but we could win one of the two crowns, possibly the Carabao Cup.

The Club World Cup should be an easy win if we play to our potential, and that tournament only adds two games to our schedule.

Liverpool lift Champions League trophy
Jordan Henderson lifts the Champions League trophy

The UEFA Super Cup is tough to predict against a new Chelsea under Frank Lampard but we should be the favourites for this one-off game too. The Champions League journey was fantastic last season and there is no reason why we cannot reach the final once again.

Can we keep our title? This is a tough question, especially if we end up facing a resurgent Atletico Madrid or a Manchester City who are hungry to put us down.

League performance – Champions

We were close last season and that journey should have made us stronger for the upcoming campaign.

City might have won the title but they aren’t a young team, with the likes of Fernandinho, Sergio Aguero and David Silva all in their 30s.

Virgil van Dijk

They lost captain Vincent Kompany too, while most of Liverpool’s players are in their prime.

Our rivals have spent more on certain positions but we have kept our stars, and they look good for the title. We cannot afford cheap draws like last season, and Klopp will certainly get his team to the top.

Top four prediction

1) Liverpool

2) Manchester City

3) Tottenham

4) Arsenal

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Good news for Liverpool as injured star takes part in training ahead of RB Salzburg clash

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Jurgen Klopp and Dejan Lovren

Dejan Lovren takes part in training ahead of RB Salzburg clash

Liverpool were handed a major injury boost ahead of their crunch Champions League clash against RB Salzburg on Tuesday.

Dejan Lovren limped off in the 3-0 win over Bournemouth at the weekend and had to be replaced. There was a re-jig in the defence with Joe Gomez moving to the centre-back’s role and Trent Alexander-Arnold coming on.

Liverpool would then have just two fit senior centre-backs with Joel Matip also on the injured list. However, the Liverpool Echo reports that Lovren was seen in training on Monday.

Jurgen Klopp and Dejan Lovren
Dejan Lovren (R) left the field with an injury at the Vitality Stadium (Image credit: Getty)

The Croatian has done a great job alongside Virgil van Dijk this season and it will be interesting to see if he starts in Austria.

Gomez also did a decent job as the right-back on Saturday against the Cherries. But the Englishman has looked a little rusty this season.

Liverpool need to avoid defeat

The Reds just need to draw at Salzburg to ensure their place in the last 16 of the competition.

Xherdan Shaqiri and Jurgen Klopp
Xherdan Shaqiri has struggled for game time this season (Image credit: Getty)

However, the Austrians are in great form and have hotshot, Erling Haaland, on their side too. They troubled us at Anfield and that cannot be ruled out on Tuesday.

Jurgen Klopp was able to rest a few players before the clash though. Sadio Mane was given a rest while Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino didn’t feature in the Merseyside derby win.

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Divock Origi and Xherdan Shaqiri looked great in the win over Everton, and we need to put out a good side to get the job done tomorrow.

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“That’s why we loaned him” – Klopp backs Liverpool star to succeed at Anfield after sending him away on loan

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Harry Wilson

Jurgen Klopp backs Harry Wilson to succeed once winger returns to Liverpool

Jurgen Klopp believes Harry Wilson will be a success at Anfield after his stint with Bournemouth.

The Welsh winger was excellent with Derby in the previous season and narrowly missed out on gaining promotion to the Premier League.

Wilson was part of Liverpool’s pre-season but joined Bournemouth on a season-long loan. The 22-year-old was slowly brought into Eddie Howe’s team and has become one of their best players this season.

Harry Wilson
Harry Wilson celebrates after scoring for Bournemouth (Image credit: Getty)

Wilson has six goals for the Cherries and has scored some great free-kicks for them too. The Welsh international was unable to play against the Reds in the previous outing, and Klopp highlighted why the winger was sent out on loan.

The German told the Mirror that Wilson has a chance to do well at Anfield too (h/t Liverpool Echo):

“Of course he can [succeed at Anfield]. That’s why we loaned him, so he can make the steps.

“It would have been difficult for Harry and I would have loved to have had him here if we had another choice, especially when Shaq [Xherdan Shaqiri] was injured.”

Klopp also claimed he was happy that Wilson couldn’t feature against the Reds and highlighted his free-kick abilities.

The manager added that Wilson was at the Cherries to improve his all-round game.

Wilson has to take his chance

The Welsh winger has to impress for the remainder of the season if he wants to be part of the Liverpool squad next season.

The Reds can do with quality cover for Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane. However, Wilson has to improve his game further.

Harvey Elliott
Harvey Elliott joined Liverpool from Fulham (Image credit: Getty)

Harvey Elliott is another youngster who has impressed since joining the Reds this season, and it will be interesting to see if the former Fulham winger gets more first-team minutes.

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Wilson has to improve his consistency during the 90 minutes as he is often left out of the game, and hopefully, he does that in the coming months.

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34-goal Brazil international wants to play alongside Firmino at Liverpool

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Gabriel Barbosa

Gabriel Barbosa open to playing with Roberto Firmino at Liverpool

Gabriel Barbosa has had an excellent season with Flamengo this time around.

The 23-year-old Brazil international has 34 goals in all competitions and is on loan from Italian giants Inter Milan.

The forward is a regular for the national side too and can play as the central striker and in the wide positions.

Gabriel Barbosa
Gabriel Barbosa is on loan at Flamengo from Inter Milan (Image credit: Getty)

Barbosa, who is also known as Gabigol, is expected to feature in the Club World Cup too. Flamengo could face Liverpool in the final if both teams win their semifinals, and the striker spoke about playing for the Reds.

The 23-year-old spoke highly of his Brazil teammate Roberto Firmino and wanted to play alongside him at club level too (h/t Liverpool Echo):

“Firmino is great. He’s been successful for many years in Europe. He is a powerful forward and he has been great for Brazil. He is an inspiration that I look up to.

“It would be a pleasure to play with him. Maybe we could team up for Brazil in the future and Liverpool is a team that everyone wants to play for.”

However, the forward added that his attention is on the Club World Cup but praised the Premier League.

Gabigol wants to play in the Premier League

The Brazil international claimed he wants to play in the league but also added that he has a contract to honour:

“It’s one of the best leagues in the world. Every player dreams of being a champion and winning the Premier League must be indescribable.

“But I still have a contract with Inter Milan and Flamengo until the end of 2019.”

Barbosa further added that he would think of his “future after the competition” and it will be interesting to see how he performs in the clash.

Divock Origi
Divock Origi scored a brace in the 5-2 win over Everton (Image credit: Getty)

Liverpool could do with another quality forward to add more competition for the starting places. However, Divock Origi and Xherdan Shaqiri have done really well in recent outings.

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The pair scored three goals in total against Everton and could feature more in the coming weeks.

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