Predicted XI : Newcastle

When the turkey’s all gone, the board games have been put away, it’s back to what we love about Christmas, which is a busy football program.

A Boxing Day visit of Rafa Benitez’s Newcastle squad awaits, and here’s who I think will take to Anfield at 3:00pm today.

Alisson: Can’t see Alisson not being selected this season unless it’s through injury or suspension, he’s getting better each game.

Alexander Arnold: After a couple of games out injured, it’s good to know Trent is back fit. Rafa undoubtedly will park the bus, and we’ll need our most creative players in their best positions and arguably TAA is our most creative right back.

Lovren: I can’t see the Lovren and Van Dijk partnership being split up until the return of either Gomez or Matip. Lovren has done alright, but I’m not going to lie, I’m missing Gomez.

Van Dijk: Fresh off properly his most impressive performance in the red shirt and first Premier League goal for Liverpool, Virgil has been possibly the most talked about defender in world football, and rightly so.

Robertson: I contemplated whether Klopp may have given Moreno a run out today, but ultimately went with the belief that Klopp will stick with Robertson.

Fabinho: With the possibility of Rafa going with 5 at the back, I’m assuming Klopp will go with two central strikers, and therefore two central midfielders, Fabinho playing the holding role.

Wijnaldum: With Keita taking a knock on Friday night, I believe Klopp will be unwilling to risk him from the start, but will start him from the bench, leaving the boss to choose to between Henderson and Gini. With Henderson starting against Wolves and Gini coming off the bench I think the roles could be reversed today.

Mane: I fully expect Mane to start on the left of midfield in a four, but depending on how the game goes, could eventually go far more advanced if need be in a front three.

Shaqiri: Like Mane I think it’s possible Xherdan could start in one role but potentially move into another position, maybe as a number ten or advanced right sided attacker depending on how the game is going.

Sturridge: With Arsenal and City coming up, the boss may take the opportunity to rest Firmino and give Sturridge a run out.

Salah: Salah has been excellent in the last few games as a central striker and I can’t see why the boss would want to move him today.

That’s the team I think will take to the pitch this afternoon, fo you agree with me, tweet me at @ianyoungkop.

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