Just like Manchester United on Sunday, Genk away represents another potential ‘banana skin’, writes @sam0007ster.
There is certainly no room for complacency on Wednesday night. Think of the trip to Belgrade last season, where Liverpool – the overwhelming favourites – were well beaten and mustered just four shots on target.
The Reds travel to Belgium hoping to make it back-to-back wins in the Champions League. Victory would signal their first away win the group stage since the 7-0 win over Maribor in October 2017.
Jürgen Klopp’s men sit second in the group, one point behind Carlo Ancelotti’s Napoli, who handed Liverpool their first defeat of the season on Matchday 1. Red Bull Salzburg, who impressed at Anfield earlier this month, sit third.
Genk bounded back after defeat in Matchday 1 with an admirable 0-0 draw against the group leaders. The Belgium outfit will have to go for the jugular at some stage, having only a single point to show for their efforts thus far. This, of course, could play into Liverpool’s hands.
But for the most part, Felice Mazzù is expected to set his team up to frustrate. He will also be hoping goalkeeper Gaëtan Coucke can replicate the form which kept out the immensely capable Hirving Lozano, Dries Mertens and Co.
Klopp to make changes?
Liverpool needed a goal at the weekend and in a nick of time Adam Lallana was on hand to equalise in the dying embers. The Reds looked far fresher after the introduction of Lallana, Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who was inches away from snatching all three points.
The Reds dominated the final 15 minutes and appeared to be buoyed as much by a change in system as a change in personnel. The shift from Klopp’s preferred 4-3-3 to a more balanced 4-2-3-1 breathed new life into an otherwise futile Liverpool performance.
So expect changes.
James Milner is set to start after sitting out on Sunday. Keita will be aching for a starting berth whilst Joe Gomez – who desperately needs minutes – is more than likely to get another chance.
Liverpool are sweating over the fitness of forward Mohammed Salah who missed the draw in Manchester at the weekend. Divock Origi played in his place but failed to impress.
Medical staff are hopeful Salah will be fit but Klopp would be unwise to rush the Egyptian back with busy months ahead. While he did take place i full training today, Salah’s inclusionn is far from a sure thing with a massive league game against Spurs at the weekend.
The Reds also revealed that Trent Alexander-Arnold and Joel Matip would not be making the trip to Belgium, meaning the certain inclusion of one, if not both, of Gomez and Dejan Lovren.
Sam’s predicted XI (4,2,3,1): Alisson; Gomez, Lovren, van Dijk, Robertson; Fabinho, Milner; Keita, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Mane; Firmino.