Liverpool and Chelsea contest the first-ever all-England UEFA Super Cup tonight at the Vodafone Park in Istanbul, Turkey.
The match takes place between the winners of last season’s Champions League (Liverpool) and the Europa League (Chelsea), and while it’s a distraction both teams could probably do without, we expect Jurgen Klopp to treat it like a proper final.
That means naming a super-strong line-up in a bid to show that Chelsea, coming off a 4-0 hammering from Man United, just aren’t at the same level of Klopp’s Liverpool.
Alisson is out injured for a few weeks and that gives Adrian the chance to show Liverpool fans what he can do. Alisson will be a miss but Adrian is a good understudy.
We can see Joel Matip coming into the centre of defence alongside Virgil van Dijk, with Andrew Robertson on the left and Joe Gomez moving out to the right.
Naby Keita would likely have started this game but he limped out of training yesterday and he just can’t seem to catch a break. It means that Klopp will likely rely on the trusted trio of Fabinho in the holding-mid position, with Georginio Wijnaldum and Jordan Henderson ahead of him.
Sadio Mane is back and he looked sharp in his cameo in the Norwich game. So, despite Divock Origi scoring, we think he’ll drop to the bench and we’ll see the Power Three together for the first time this season.
Virgil van Dijk has proved himself as one of the best centre-backs in the world but we think he might face a different type of battle tonight, with Olivier Giroud getting the nod over Tammy Abraham. Both players come in at the same height and it will be van Dijk who’s tasked with keeping the France international at bay.
It wasn’t an easy first game in charge for Frank Lampard and it’s not going to get any easier tonight. Liverpool’s defence has been leaky in recent games so Chelsea should get on the scoresheet, but Liverpool will come out on top.
Liverpool 4 – 1 Chelsea
The game is being shown on BT Sport in the UK and it kicks off at 8pm.
This is the starting XI we expect Klopp to put out tonight: