by Damien Hillen (@DamienHillen)
Jurgen Klopp is likely to make changes following two out of character performances. Curtis Jones has done his best to stake a claim for a starting berth. And given that we are unlikely to see both Oxlaide-Chamberlin and Kieta in the midfield three again – neither pulled up trees against Villa – Jones could be given the nod.
Andy Robertson looks like he needs a rest, which presents a potential selection headache. Taking him out of the team allows Brighton to focus on stopping Trent going forward, thus nullifying two key attacking threats.
Brighton are a good team, much better than Aston Villa, who the Reds struggled to breakdown on Sunday. They’ll certainly be no pushover – that’s for sure.
The Reds won the home game 2-1 back in November, a far more dominant and one-sided affair than the scoreline suggests.
But Klopp’s champions need to be a lot more ruthless than they have been of late if they are to take all three points in their march towards a possible 104 points total.
by Sam Patterson (@sam0007ster)
Again – like City away and Villa at home – it’s hard to predict. Liverpool’s football since they were crowned champions has been, to put it plainly, stodgy. Understandable, but stodgy.
The Seagulls are a neat and tidy football team which could cause problems. They’ll be up for the fight too. This game would have been earmarked all the way back in August as a chance to bloody the nose of one of Europe’s best. Now the visitors are English champions. All the more reason, you’d think, for Brighton to be bang up for this one.
Liverpool, at their best, win this comfortably. Indeed, the chasm in class between these two sides is ineffable. Klopp will be hoping that shows tonight. He’ll also be keen to see a few of the young guns – Jones in particular – come to the fore.
It could also turn out to be a big game for Takumi Minamino. The Japanese international will be desperate for game time, and to illustrate just why the Reds were so keen to secure his signature.
Expect goals. 4-2 Liverpool.
Sam’s predicted XI: (4-3-3) Alisson; Trent A-A, Van Dijk, Gomez, Robertson; Fabinho, Henderson, Minamino; Salah, Jones, Firmino