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Liverpool Team News: Injuries, suspensions and line-up vs West Ham

10:14 BST 10/08/2018
Roberto Firmino, Liverpool vs West Ham
The Reds are looking to start their Premier League campaign with a win at Anfield against Manuel Pellegrini's new-look Hammers

Jurgen Klopp believes his Liverpool side are ready to make their mark on the Premier League this season, and their first test comes at Anfield against a new-look West Ham United team.

Manuel Pellegrini has made a raft of new signings at the Hammers, and they arrive on Merseyside on Sunday hoping to spring an opening-day upset.

For the Reds, the aim is simple; to close the gap to champions Manchester City and to confirm their status as one of Europe's most exciting sides. Memories of their Champions League final defeat to Real Madrid back in May must be swiftly banished, with plenty of observers tipping Klopp's men for a title challenge this time around.

Last season they completed a league double over West Ham, winning 4-1 at the London Stadium and 4-1 at Anfield.

Here, Goal takes a look at everything you need to know ahead of Sunday's meeting...

Liverpool injuries

Injuries bit Liverpool hard at the back end of last season, and they have a few problems already heading into the new campaign.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will miss the majority of the season due to a serious knee injury, while Joel Matip will miss the West Ham game with a thigh problem. Ragnar Klavan is another doubt, but Joe Gomez should be fit after a minor problem. James Milner suffered a nasty head wound against Napoli last weekend, but could play wearing a protective headband.

Dejan Lovren may feature on the bench but only returned to training on Monday following his World Cup exertions. Jordan Henderson and Trent Alexander-Arnold are more likely to be involved, having featured in Tuesday night's friendly with Torino.

Alisson Becker, Naby Keita and Xherdan Shaqiri are all in line to make their competitive debuts, though Fabinho is battling a minor muscle injury sustained against Torino. Liverpool will make a late decision on the Brazilian.

Liverpool suspensions

Liverpool do not have any suspended players for this game. 

Likely Liverpool starting line-up

The big questions concern Liverpool's defence, with Alexander-Arnold likely to be preferred to Nathaniel Clyne at right-back and Gomez expected to partner Virgil van Dijk at centre-half. If not, Nat Phillips could be in line for his professional debut.

In midfield, the question is which player joins Fabinho and Keita. Henderson looks favourite although Milner, Gini Wijnaldum and Adam Lallana are options, while Klopp could also draft in Shaqiri or Daniel Sturridge to add an extra man to his attack. Both have impressed during pre-season.

West Ham team news

Pellegrini has problems of his own, with key men Winston Reid and Manuel Lanzini set for lengthy lay-offs with knee injuries. Andy Carroll, the former Liverpool striker, will miss at least a month with an ankle injury, while new signing Andrey Yarmolenko is a doubt due to a hip problem.

They could give a host of debuts, with the likes of Lukasz Fabianski, Ryan Fredericks, Jack Wilshere, Felipe Anderson and Issa Diop all likely to play.

TV channel & kick-off time

The fixture will be broadcast live in the UK (United Kingdom) on Sky Sports Main Event and Sky Sports Football, kick off 1.30pm BST.

In the United States , the game can be watched live on television on NBC Sports, kick off 8.30am ET.

Best Opta match facts

  • Liverpool have won each of their last three league games against West Ham, scoring four goals in each of those victories; they’ve never scored 4+ goals in four consecutive top-flight games against a single opponent.

  • Against no other side have West Ham lost more top-flight games than against Liverpool (61, level with Everton).

  • West Ham have won only one of their last 45 top-flight visits to Anfield to face Liverpool (D12 L32), with that win coming in August 2015 (3-0).

  • Liverpool’s two opening weekend fixtures under Jurgen Klopp have produced a total of 13 goals – beating Arsenal 4-3 in 2016-17, before a 3-3 draw at Watford last term.

  • West Ham have lost their season opener 11 times in the Premier League, more than any other side.

  • This is only the third time West Ham have kicked off a Premier League campaign on a Sunday, but all occasions have been in the last four seasons. They beat Arsenal 2-0 in 2015-16 before losing 4-0 at Man Utd last season.

  • Liverpool have scored four goals in each of their last three Premier League clashes with West Ham – the only side to have scored 4+ against another in four straight games in the competition are Tottenham against Stoke.

  • Sadio Mane has been directly involved in four goals in his three Premier League appearances for Liverpool against West Ham (1 goal, 3 assists).

  • Sadio Mane has scored in each of Liverpool’s last two opening Premier League fixtures. Only five players have ever scored in 3+ consecutive opening weekends in the competition: Teddy Sheringham (4 between 1992-93 and 1995-96), Louis Saha (2001-02 to 2003-04), Thierry Henry (2001-02 to 2003-04), Alan Shearer (2002-03 to 2004-05) and David Silva (2013-14 to 2015-16).

  • The last Liverpool player to score in three consecutive opening top-flight fixtures – as Sadio Mane could do – was John Barnes between 1989-90 and 1991-92.

  • Mo Salah scored three and assisted another in his two appearances for Liverpool against West Ham last season.

  • New West Ham manager Manuel Pellegrini has lost more Premier League games against Liverpool than he has vs any other opponent in the competition (P6 W2 D0 L4).