Champions League Preview: FC Midtjylland vs Liverpool
When: Wednesday 09 December 15:00 EDT
Location: Arena Herning, Herning, Denmark
Referee: François Letexier (FRA)
Where to Watch: CBS All Access, TUDN, and fuboTV (free trial)
Liverpool and Ajax have met just once previously, a 2-0 win in the reverse fixture earlier this year, thanks to goals from Diogo Jota and Mohamed Salah.
Recent Form (All Competitions)
W (WOL) – W (AJA) – D* (BHA) – L (ATA) – W (LEI)
W (VEJ) – D (ATA) – D (AAB) – L (AJA) – W (AGF)
*VAR credited with the win, again…
Injuries & Suspensions
The injury crisis eased slightly this week. Trent Alexander-Arnold (calf) and Naby Keita (Hamstring) returned to training this week, and both could feature this game (though I would be surprised if either got more than 30 minutes).
Tree saw the return of skipper Jordan Henderson (thigh) at the weekend. Virgil Van Dijk (knee) is out for the majority of the season, along with Joe Gomez (knee). Other players unlikely to feature are Thiago Alcantara (knee), , Xherdan Shaqiri (muscle), Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (knee), and James Milner (Hamstring).
No injuries or suspensions for the Danish club. Why always us?
This is a fun one to predict – since we do not need a result from this match, the laundry list of injuries has grown, and the rest of december is packed with must-win fixtures, so I imagine we will see a lot of young faces representing the Reds.
I see lots of kids and fringe players in for us this match – would be more if it were not for niggling injuries (I’m looking at you, Shaqiri). Klopp will choose the standard 4-3-3. Caominh “Kweev” Kelleher gets another start at goal, because he has been fantastic – why not give him more experience? The backline sees Tsmikas and Neco Williams on the outside, with Rhys Williams and Billy Koumetio partnering at CB. In my opinion, there is no point risking another senior center back, especially when our academy products have been performing so well. Trent will likely see a runout at RB, but I do no think he will be risked to start.
Our midfield options are short, so I think we see the youth of Curtis Jones given the task of marshalling the middle of the pitch. Could he be given his first start as Captain? While Naby is probably due a few minutes, I again think he’ll sit for the first hour, which gives youngsters Leighton Clarkson and Jake Cain to showcase their pressing and passing skills.
Up top, Origi and Minamino should fill in nicely up top. While I expect them to go the whole match, Diogo Jota might be given a start as well.
I think we’ll see a 4-2-3-1 for FC Midtjylland, with an unchanged side from their last Champions League outing against Ajax – the only difference being CB James slotting in for Sviatchenko, who received a sending off in that match.
With the group already won, Liverpool fans watch this one unbothered. As long as there are no more injuries!