Getting the balance in the team right is never an easy task and with only a few days rest between Liverpool’s narrow win over German side FC Augsburg in the Europa League on Thursday and the League Cup final showdown against Manchester City at Wembley tomorrow, Reds boss Jurgen Klopp will have some difficult decisions to make when he’s laying out the teamsheet — though the German will be afforded the rare luxury of having an almost fully fit squad rather than having injuries influence his selections.
“I spoke about it this morning with the lads. We have had a few [injury] problems since I’ve been here, but never the problem that we had too many players,” he explained in his pre-match press call. “Making a squad this time is two things – the best thing I could ever do and the most difficult I had to do until now, because a few players will be disappointed with our decisions, for sure,” conceded the manager. “This morning I had 13 players in training and it was the highest level. I don’t want to say it was because of the final but it was the highest level. They are all ready and now I have to make decisions – overnight, not today,” he said, before adding, “I will make them, that’s no problem.”
Video courtesy of LFCTV
Having made only one change to the squad over the past three-matches, it’s expected that Klopp will name a side very similar to the one that ran out against Augsburg earlier in the week. That being said, a curve-ball could be on the cards as the former Borussia Dortmund boss looks to not only follow up on the Reds rollicking of the Citizens earlier in the season, but claim his first trophy in English football.
“I should not talk here about tactics – I think even in Manchester they have televisions so that is not for the press conference,” half-joked the Liverpool manager. “You can be sure we will have a plan but it is not allowed to go with exactly the same plan in a completely different game,” he continued, quick to brush aside memories of their visit to the Etihad in November and bring the focus back to what lies ahead. “If I think about it I have a few nice pictures in my mind of after the game at Wembley, being together with our fans and a real reason to celebrate together with no doubts about why we do that.”