Mo Salah may start for Liverpool at Arsenal as Reds try to catch City
Mo Salah could START for Liverpool at Arsenal in a big boost to Jurgen Klopp as the Reds try to close the gap on Manchester City at the top… while Emile Smith Rowe and Takehiro Tomiyasu are in contention for Mikel Arteta’s side
- Mohamed Salah may start for Liverpool despite picking up a knock vs Brighton
- Takehiro Tomiyasu and Emile Smith Rowe could return from injury for Arsenal
- The Reds travel to the Gunners for a crucial Premier League clash on Wednesday
Arsenal and Liverpool will face off in a clash that could have serious implications for the top of the Premier League table on Wednesday evening.
Jurgen Klopp’s Reds could move just one point off league leaders Manchester City if they win this game in hand, while the Gunners would go five points behind Chelsea in third if they win – and they would have another game in hand on the Blues too.
With the title race and the race for the Champions League qualifying spots up for grabs, both managers are likely to play a strong team in their search for three points.
Liverpool star Mohamed Salah could retain his place after picking up a knock in Saturday’s 2-0 win against Brighton, with centre back Ibrahima Konate also in contention to return from injury.
For Mikel Arteta’s hosts, defender Takehiro Tomiyasu is back in training and Emile Smith Rowe is pushing for a start after impressing off the bench in Sunday’s 2-0 win against Leicester.
Ahead of the tie, Sportsmail predicts both sides’ likely starting XI.
Arsenal and Liverpool are set to face off again in the Premier League on Wednesday evening
The respective bosses (above) clashed on the touchline during their game in November 2021
GOALKEEPER – Aaron Ramsdale
Ramsdale has been ever-present between the sticks since displacing German Bernd Leno early in the season and, barring a dramatic late injury, will continue in goal.
RIGHT BACK – Takehiro Tomiyasu
Japanese full-back Tomiyasu is back in training (below) after suffering a calf injury against Manchester City which has kept him out for six games.
He is set to be assessed – but even if not fully at match fitness should replace Cedric Soares, with his physicality and resilience likely to come in handy against Liverpool’s tricky wingers.
CENTRE BACK – Ben White
An England call-up could be on the cards for Ben White, such has been the steadiness of his performances since signing from Brighton in the summer. Rob Holding is a decent back-up but White is clear first choice.
Right-back Takehiro Tomiyasu is back in training after injury and could replace Cedric Soares
The defender has missed the last six games after picking up a knock against Manchester City
CENTRE BACK – Gabriel
With Pablo Mari farmed out on loan in January and William Saliba still on loan at Marseille for now, Gabriel is the only genuine option for the left-sided centre back slot. He offers a set piece threat too.
LEFT BACK – Kieran Tierney
After a prolonged absence from the side due to injury earlier this campaign, Tierney appears to have put his fitness problems behind him. The Scot offers more steadiness than Nuno Tavares.
CENTRE MIDFIELD – Thomas Partey
The Atletico man is a key cog in the Gunners midfield and when fit is an automatic starter.
CENTRE MIDFIELD – Granit Xhaka
Xhaka – disciplinary problems aside – has performed reasonably well in the engine room and should retain his place ahead of the raw Albert Sambi Lokonga and the prosaic Mohamed Elneny.
RIGHT WING – Bukayo Saka
One of the stars of the Premier League, let alone Arsenal. £72million signing Nicolas Pepe is an OK squad player but Saka has the right wing locked down.
Young midfielder Emile Smith Rowe (left) is pushing for a start but may be on the bench again
Sportsmail predicts there will only be one change to Mikel Arteta’s starting XI, fitness allowing
ATTACKING MIDFIELD – Martin Odegaard
After taking some time to adjust to the physicality of the Premier League, Odegaard’s vision and leadership has shone through in recent weeks with some excellent performances. One of the players Arteta can trust.
LEFT WING – Gabriel Martinelli
If impressive midfielder Emile Smith Rowe comes in, it will be for Martinelli on the left hand side – but the Brazilian’s pace and directness could trouble the Reds backline. Continuity is key.
STRIKER – Alexandre Lacazette
Lacazette, admittedly playing well, will keep his place simply because of the lack of realistic options.
GOALKEEPER – Alisson
Caoimhin Kelleher may well be the world’s best No 2 as Klopp claims, but he’s still No 2.
RIGHT BACK – Trent Alexander-Arnold
Alexander-Arnold can cope with the relentless schedule and will start again – Klopp would have not sent Neco Williams on loan to Fulham otherwise.
Centre back Ibrahima Konate (left) is fit again and could replace Joel Matip in the Reds defence
CENTRE BACK – Ibrahima Konate
One of the potential changes is at centre back. Clearly Joel Matip is a classy operator but he also has his injury issues and Konate has shown he is good enough to step in.
CENTRE BACK – Virgil van Dijk
If he’s fit, he starts. Simple as.
LEFT BACK – Andy Robertson
With Kostas Tsimikas out with illness, Robertson will play once again.
DEFENSIVE MIDFIELD – Fabinho
Fabinho is a wonderful player and is generally immune from the German’s rotation in midfield. Could be a Liverpool legend by the time he leaves.
CENTRE MIDFIELD – Jordan Henderson
Henderson sometimes finds himself on the bench given the wealth of central midfield options available to Klopp, but he is in Liverpool’s best XI and will likely play.
Mohamed Salah faces a late fitness test after a foot injury but may come back into the team
Other than Kostas Tsimikas and James Milner, Jurgen Klopp has a fully-fit squad to pick from
CENTRE MIDFIELD – Thiago
The third midfield slot is possibly the hardest to nail down, with Naby Keita, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (against his former club) and even Harvey Elliott options to play.
However, Thiago’s guile, inventiveness and big-game experience should see him start to the left of Fabinho.
RIGHT WING – Mohamed Salah
Sure, he picked up a foot injury against Brighton and might not be fully fit. Sure, he’s played so many games already this season. But his name’s Mohamed Salah and he’s class.
LEFT WING – Luis Diaz
The Colombian has settled into to Anfield life better than Liverpool could ever have expected. He looks a real find and a long-term successor to Mane on the left.
STRIKER – Sadio Mane
The Senegalese international is a perfect foil to Salah and will likely continue up front, as he does for his national side. Roberto Firmino is coming back from injury and Diogo Jota’s form has been patchy of late.
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