746
Scout Notes

Klopp explains team selection as Liverpool impress in Barca defeat

Liverpool have a mountain to climb in the second leg of their UEFA Champions League semi-final against Barcelona next Tuesday after a 3-0 defeat in the Nou Camp last night.

Before then, of course, the Reds travel to St. James’ Park to face Newcastle United and there was plenty of encouragement for owners of Liverpool assets heading into Gameweek 37 despite the scoreline.

There is much to discuss in our Scout Notes article below, including a dissection of Jurgen Klopp’s surprise team selection.

Barcelona 3-0 Liverpool

Jurgen Klopp explained his decision not to start Roberto Firmino (£9.4m) in last night’s match in Catalonia.

The Brazilian striker had missed Friday’s 5-0 win over Huddersfield Town with a groin injury and was only among the substitutes against Barcelona, coming on for the final 11 minutes.

Speaking ahead of kick-off, Klopp said:

Bobby wants to [play] and the medical department told me ‘yes, it’s good’ but then you have to make sure. I’m not sure if 90 minutes or whatever.

So he doesn’t have to start, that’s why we start like we start. Bobby is on the bench, that’s good news.

For the 17.5% of Fantasy Premier League managers who still own Firmino, it was perhaps the best possible outcome: the Brazil international being declared fit enough to be involved in the match-day squad but ultimately kept fresh for Saturday’s trip to Tyneside.

The hope for owners now is that any residual fear about Firmino’s groin strain will have evaporated by the time Liverpool run out at St. James’ Park – so Klopp’s pre-match press conference on Friday will be of much interest.

There was also a welcome boost for Trent Alexander-Arnold‘s (£5.7m) owners last night.

The return of Joe Gomez (£4.8m) was always seen as a threat to the England right-back’s security of starts, with the concern being that Gomez would be handed a run-out in the Premier League at the expense of the 23.3%-owned Alexander-Arnold.

Gomez was thrown into the lion’s den at Barcelona instead, however, surely meaning that Alexander-Arnold will return to the starting XI in Gameweek 37 – especially as Gomez was visibly flagging in the closing stages of Wednesday’s match.

Interviewed ahead of kick-off, Klopp said:

For Trent it’s good, he can refresh a little bit, there are important games to come. But the first thing we wanted to make was a good line-up for tonight and for a good line-up you need legs and that’s what we tried to make sure.

It was clear when Joe would be available again that there would be a game and I think today it makes absolute sense in that position.

The release of the Liverpool teamsheet raised eyebrows, with questions asked over who would deputise in Firmino’s absence given that Divock Origi (£5.0m) and Xherdan Shaqiri (£6.8m) were also among the substitutes and Daniel Sturridge (£5.6m) was not part of the 18-man squad.

That man turned out to be Georginio Wijnaldum (£5.5m), playing as a “false nine” with fairly unspectacular results.

Rotation has been commonplace in the middle of the park lately and Klopp burned through five central midfielders last night, with Wijnaldum up top, Naby Keita (£7.1m) limping off midway through the first half and substitute Jordan Henderson (£5.3m) coming on to replace his injured team-mate after 24 minutes.

The severity of Keita’s injury is yet to be determined.

Who gets the nod in the engine room on Saturday remains to be seen, with Klopp saying ahead of kick-off:

The boys are all in good shape. (But) Hendo played five games in a row, for example, and we play on Saturday and Tuesday.

Millie didn’t play for two games so it was clear we had to use him. Fabinho didn’t play for two games so it was clear we had to use him. Naby didn’t have that many games during the whole season, Gini didn’t play all the games.

That’s why midfield, where it’s really intense, is where we have to make sure we have legs there.

There were some stand-out performances among the players that did play, with Joel Matip’s (£4.9m) display much better than the scoreline suggests and Andrew Robertson (£6.8m) excelling at both ends of the pitch.

Sadio Mane (£10.2m) and Mohamed Salah (£13.3m) posed plenty of threat, too, each registering four shots – no-one on show attempted more.

While their usual accuracy in front of goal was missing last night, the fact that the premium midfield pair were presented with eight chances between them away at Barcelona was encouraging to see heading into Gameweek 37.

Salah was electric for much of the evening, if a little wasteful in possession – the Egyptian’s pass completion rate being the lowest of all 14 Liverpool players that took to the field.

FPL’s leading points-scorer forced Marc-Andre ter Stegen into a smart low save early in the second half before spurning the chance to bag what could have been a vital goal late on, smashing the woodwork from close range after Firmino’s initial effort had been cleared off the line.

Mane, too, had a glorious chance to bag an away goal, spooning over from 12 yards on 35 minutes with only ter Stegen to beat.

The assist for that chance came from Henderson, who was once again used in a more advanced role on the right of midfield.

James Milner (£5.6m) also had two presentable opportunities that were saved by the Barcelona goalkeeper as Liverpool not only shaded goalscoring chances but also possession – not something many teams can say when they visit the Nou Camp.

Reflecting on his side’s positive display, Klopp said:

I think it was the best away game in the Champions League, not only this year, last year included. Against a side like this, playing this kind of football I was completely happy. We played between the lines, we didn’t play through, we were in the box, we had really good chances and caused them a lot of problems – that’s good.

The Champions League is now like this: if you lose away it’s not a massive problem, it can happen, as long as you score a goal. That’s the problem tonight, we didn’t score that goal, so that makes our life now not easy, to be honest. But from my point of view, my boys gained a lot of respect again for the way they played, how they developed.

Asked what impressed him most about Liverpool’s performance, Klopp added:

How we defended it, how brave we were in these situations, I liked it. When we had the ball, we were not always brilliant but we were pretty much always really good. We played, we controlled the game in moments, we let them run, we had to defend, we created – not chances constantly because that’s not possible, but moments with a chance to make a proper chance of it. That’s good and that’s what you have to do, you have to create by yourself and that’s what we did.

In the end, nobody is really interested – probably only football nerds will think about it – because it was about the result and we lost 3-0. I can work really well with this game, I will use this game to show the boys what is possible. It was a brave performance that was very passionate, very lively and in a lot of moments creative and direct.

Liverpool bossed the game for periods of the second half to such an extent that Ernesto Valverde changed shape to a 4-4-2 and sacrificed Philippe Coutinho, with even Lionel Messi not as influential as he usually is.

It is difficult to subdue the Argentinean playmaker for 90 minutes, though, and while his first goal owed much to a slice of luck – Messi following in after Luis Suarez’s shot had hit the bar – his second and Barcelona’s crucial third goal, a sensational free-kick from distance, underscored his ability to turn a game in an instant.

A flat-footed Virgil van Dijk (£6.7m) could perhaps have done better for Barcelona’s first two goals but a much easier test will await the Dutchman and the Liverpool defence on Saturday evening, with Rafael Benitez’s side likely to be adopting a backs-to-the-wall, 5-4-1 approach on Tyneside.

Liverpool XI (4-3-3): Alisson, Gomez, Matip, van Dijk, Robertson, Milner (Origi 85′), Fabinho, Keita (Henderson 24′), Wijnaldum (Firmino 79′), Salah, Mané.

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746 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Codetto
    • 2 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Lloris
    Robbo Bennett Valery
    Mane Salah-(vc) Son Jota
    Jimmy Aguero-(c) Wilson

    Foster Babel Dunk Masina

    1 FT 0.2 ITB

    Dunk => AWB or salah => sterling thoughts?

    1. kuzser
      • 2 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      save this week or get awb

  2. Team Cruel
    • 3 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Salah (TC) GW38 will be the real winner with Chuck Norris in goal for Wolves. 4G 1A incoming.

    1. avfc82
      • 9 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      I think Norris will play tomorrow, not against Liverpool. It would shatter the poor lads confidence if they stick him in the nets at Anfield. Wolves fans do rate him though.

      1. avfc82
        • 9 Years
        1 month, 17 days ago

        Sorry, not tomorrow, Saturday!

        1. Gregor
          • Has Moderation Rights
          • 9 Years
          1 month, 17 days ago

          Agreed.

    2. Mysterion
      • 1 Year
      1 month, 17 days ago

      *Babel TC 37

  3. Tmel
    • 8 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Best TC option:

    a) Kun (LEI)
    b) Kun (bri)
    c) Sterling (LEI)
    d) Sterling (bri)

    1. Codetto
      • 2 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      sterling bri

    2. Bubbles1985
      • 2 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      I would go A

    3. FPL Pillars
      • 2 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Considered Hazard?

    4. Gregor
      • Has Moderation Rights
      • 9 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      A.

  4. 1justlookin
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 8 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Is Kelly at CPA likely to keep his place?

    1. Holmes (specialist in failu…
      • 5 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Yes

    2. Gregor
      • Has Moderation Rights
      • 9 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Yeah.

  5. greggles
    • 8 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    lost on last post...

    Gunn
    Valery / Laporte / Doherty
    Salah / Mane / Son / JWP
    Jimenez / Aguero(c) / Llorente

    Subs: Foster / Doucoure / Duffy / Dunk

    Thinking Doucoure > Richarlison and benching Llorente. Chasing 53 points in minileague. Thoughts?

    1. Wheato182
      • 6 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      I'd save the transfer tbh.

  6. Devo-McDuff
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Any better options (including hold FT) to replace Moura up to 7.6 than Siggi? Already have Jota.

    1. Forza Papac
      • 3 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Not necessarily a better option but Antonio has played 90 and scored in each of West Hams last two games. Two decent fixtures to come. 1.1% ownership. Maybe worth a punt.

      1. Devo-McDuff
        1 month, 17 days ago

        Decent shout ta

      2. avfc82
        • 9 Years
        1 month, 17 days ago

        Good shout, Antonio has gone massively under the radar. 6 goals and 5 assists in 20 starts. Lots of shots in the box these last couple of weeks too.

  7. Forza Papac
    • 3 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Eriksen > Sane or Bilva?

    Both have 3 returns in last 6. Sane started 3 of those, Bilva 5. Money no object.

    1. EMBOLOFAN
      1 month, 17 days ago

      rather have eriksen

    2. Wheato182
      • 6 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      I had a similar choice this week taking Son out, went with B.Silva as he seems the slightly more nailed.

    3. Karan14
      • 3 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Bilva is more nailed imo but Eriksen could easily do better than both.

    4. Devo-McDuff
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Bilva was my first choice to replace Moura as above, but 0.1 short ha.

      I'm a city fan and Sane was very poor against Burnley. If Ferna fit, then can't see Sane starting either of next two.

    5. Dybala10
      • 1 Year
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Looking at Bilva and feel slightly underwhelmed but having triple City is necessary really.

  8. Wheato182
    • 6 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Good to go?

    Foster
    Laporte - Roberston - Doherty
    Mane - Salah - Jota - B.Silva
    Aguero - Jimenez - Llorente

    Bench - Ryan - JWP - Valery - Dunk

    Wish i could get Sterling in but cant without sacrificing Salah or Mane which feels like a waste, also unsure whether to play JWP over Llorente.....

  9. Gudjohnsen
    • 2 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Sterling the best C option if you don't have Aguero?

    1. Wheato182
      • 6 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Computer says....AYE

  10. Gudjohnsen
    • 2 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Best option for this week?

    A. Shaw
    B. Digne
    C. Doherty

    1. Wheato182
      • 6 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      C.

  11. Strchld
    • 2 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Which one in, Pogba or Rashford?

    1. Flippo_
      • 1 Year
      1 month, 17 days ago

      I have them both, but I recommend Pogba to buy

  12. SHOWSTOPPERRR
    • 1 Year
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Tc left when and where to put¿??opinions welcome...

    1. Flippo_
      • 1 Year
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Jimenez TC Gw37 against Fulham at home. Or a Crystal Palace defender against Cardiff away in GW37

    2. TRASH BOAT
      • 5 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Sterling Monday

  13. Flynny
    • 4 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Hi - interested to know why Kun is so far ahead sterling in the captain poll when generally many have favoured sterling 2nd half of the season.

    Giving the correct one the armband may secure or sleek my mini league so it's a massive choice and not sure which way to go.

    Is the consensus that kun is in better form and most likely to score the crucial goals that win city the league? Or is sterling still the better option.

    Thanks

    1. Gudjohnsen
      • 2 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Sterling for me just edges it but I don't have Aguero so don't listen to me.

    2. Irbox ⚽
      • 2 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Sterling for me

    3. avfc82
      • 9 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      I think Sterling is edging it for me at the moment.

    4. Ask Yourself
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Aguero scores more points last week

  14. Karan14
    • 3 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Who scores more points over the next 2 gameweeks?

    A) Shaw (hud, CAR) + Eriksen (bou, EVE) & one of Rash/Pogba (CAR) next week

    B) TAA (new, WOL) + Pogba (hud, CAR) & one of Mitro(NEW)/Zaha(BOU) next week

    C)TAA (new, WOL) + B.Silva (LEI, bha) & Rash (CAR) next week

    Cheers!

    1. Wheato182
      • 6 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Prob C wouldnt really want any Man U though...

  15. grayedog
    • 1 Year
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Best keeper 4.9 or under rest of season:

    a. Rico
    b. Guaita
    c. Pickford
    d. Other
    e. Keep Foster/Ryan, and transfer out Eriksen instead

    1. Flippo_
      • 1 Year
      1 month, 17 days ago

      B

    2. timmmuh
      • 3 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      B

  16. Lukakwho
    • 1 Year
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Is pogba a viable pick despite his terrible form

    1. Flippo_
      • 1 Year
      1 month, 17 days ago

      I have still trust in Pogba since GW 18.

  17. Dybala10
    • 1 Year
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Double Liverpool defence vs Newcastle or play Boly?

    1. Flippo_
      • 1 Year
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Boly to spread the risk

    2. Holmes (specialist in failu…
      • 5 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Double if they are Trent and Robertson, otherwise spread the risk

    3. EMBOLOFAN
      1 month, 17 days ago

      "spreading risk" as a concept isnt applicable to fpl. if you own two liverpool defenders play them. why wouldnt you

    4. Good Kompany
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Double up with Liverpool is a no brainier for me

    5. Dybala10
      • 1 Year
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Thanks all.

  18. lindeg
    1 month, 17 days ago

    will lovren start v newcastle?

  19. Flippo_
    • 1 Year
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Alisson
    Bednarek - David Luiz- TAA
    Milivojevic - Sterling - Pogba - Mane (C) - Lucas Moura
    Jimenez - Lacazette

    On the bench: Ederson - Rashford - AWB - Ake
    I have the benchboost chip left, is this the right moment to play Bench Boost? And also is Mane the right captain for this gameweek?

    1. kuzser
      • 2 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      would play BB

  20. Would Ed Woodward
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Wolves aren't gonna keep a CS against Fulham are they? I hope they concede early at least.

    1. TRASH BOAT
      • 5 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      With Jota/Jim/Doh I'm only worried about the other end...

      1. Would Ed Woodward
        1 month, 17 days ago

        Same players as me, I need those rare Doh CS points!

    2. Amey
      1 month, 17 days ago

      😀

  21. thunder_mike
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 6 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Salvaged an really awful season and sitting at 120K.
    A) Play it safe and aim to sneak into the top 100K
    B) Go for broke, take a hit or two and go all in for Man Utd players.

    1. Miguel Sanchez
      • 2 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      B

    2. Flippo_
      • 1 Year
      1 month, 17 days ago

      B

  22. kuzser
    • 2 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Who to play: Wilson or Redmond? Currently on WIlson

    My team for gw37:
    Foster (Ryan)
    Taa Doherty Vertongen (Duffy valery)
    Son jota mane Salah (Redmond)
    Jimenez Wilson Aguero

    1. Flippo_
      • 1 Year
      1 month, 17 days ago

      West ham is easier than Tottenham away. I should recommend to play Redmond

      1. Cruz88
        • 3 Years
        1 month, 17 days ago

        Bournemouth are at home

  23. Little Red Lacazette
    • 2 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    All set?

    Lloris
    Laporte TAA Doherty
    Son Hazard Jota Salah
    Jimenez Aguero(C) Wilson

    Foster Dunk Yoshida Holland

  24. The Mighty Whites
    • 4 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    2FT, 0.1 ITB, thoughts?

    Lloris, Foster

    Robertson, Doherty, Dunk, Valery, Yoshida

    Sterling, Mane, Eriksen, Son, Hojbjerg

    Aguero, Jimenez, Wilson

  25. TRASH BOAT
    • 5 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Best 6.7 mid punt? Rich?

    1. Snevitz
      • 9 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Jota this week, Redmond next week.

    2. timmmuh
      • 3 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Antonio has been on fire lately

      1. timmmuh
        • 3 Years
        1 month, 17 days ago

        oops - Antonio at 6.8 now

  26. Jellyfish
    • 7 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Bench dilemma, one of the following meds to be benched. Out to the vote...

    A) Doherty
    B) VVD
    C) Wilson
    D) Eriksen

    Pick one?

    1. Kevin 11
      • 1 Year
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Doherty

    2. Snevitz
      • 9 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Wilson or Doherty.
      In my team I am benching Doherty and playing Van Dijk.

      1. Jellyfish
        • 7 Years
        1 month, 17 days ago

        Yes I was looking at those 2. It’s currently on Wilson

  27. Kevin 11
    • 1 Year
    1 month, 17 days ago

    a) Deulofeu (playing spot) > Babel
    b) Deulofeu > Millivojevic
    c) Firmino > Vardy
    Id rather a and b Firm seems fit

    1. Goonerly
      • 1 Year
      1 month, 17 days ago

      B deffo

  28. Snevitz
    • 9 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    I'm looking to get Pogba in for either Son or Eriksen.
    Which one of the two would you get rid of and why?

    1. Shteve
      • 9 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Eriksen cause he's more likely to be rested this weekend

      1. Snevitz
        • 9 Years
        1 month, 17 days ago

        With Doherty first on my bench that may be a positive.

        1. Shteve
          • 9 Years
          1 month, 17 days ago

          Seems strange not to be playing Doherty this week?

          1. Snevitz
            • 9 Years
            1 month, 17 days ago

            I'll post my team on the next page, I can't see any way of starting him.

            1. Shteve
              • 9 Years
              1 month, 17 days ago

              Cool

    2. TheBabyfacedAssassin
      • 9 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Eriksen if I where you. Son didn't play CL. Eriksen might be rested. Son more owned and can get bigger hauls, imo.

      1. Snevitz
        • 9 Years
        1 month, 17 days ago

        Thanks

  29. TheBabyfacedAssassin
    • 9 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Lloris
    Doherty, TAA, Valery
    Sterling, Salah, Son, Jota, Redmond
    Aguero, Jimenez
    Subs: Foster, Gray, Duffy, Dunk

    1 FT, 0.3 ITB. Son > Pogba? Save? Other suggestions? Cheers.

    1. Shteve
      • 9 Years
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Upgrade gray or Duffy unless your happy playing the two Southampton lads

      1. TheBabyfacedAssassin
        • 9 Years
        1 month, 17 days ago

        Could do Duffy > Shaw or Kola.

        1. Shteve
          • 9 Years
          1 month, 17 days ago

          Yeah, Shaw is a good shout. Not sure about kola though, seeing as he's been rotated a good bit recently

        2. Snevitz
          • 9 Years
          1 month, 17 days ago

          Duffy to Shaw could be good.

  30. JJO
    • 6 Years
    1 month, 17 days ago

    Wow that overall no1 guy already won it right?
    Ever happened someone won it that easily?

    1. Amey
      1 month, 17 days ago

      Yep
      Too far ahead 😮