Dags för Liverpool att kliva in i ligacupen, en turnering som främst brukar vara ett tillfälle för de som inte fått så mycket speltid att visa upp sig, men som samtidigt är en chans för Klopp att ta sin första titel i klubben. Motståndet är verkligen inget lätt sådant, för bortamatcherna mot Leicester de senaste åren har inte direkt givit oss några trevliga minnen för framtiden. Jim Knight(@JimKnight88), som dyker upp här på sidan en gång till under veckan, berättar här om statusen på våra motståndare:
1. Tell us about the season so far, what do you think of the team´s performances?
It’s been tough and we’ve had some very challenging games. Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester United in your first four matches is always going to be a hard way to begin. There have been some good moments, but there’s plenty of work to be done, especially at the back. Having lost against the bigger teams though, it’s even more important we start to grind out the results in matches where we’re expected to do so.
2. How important is the cup for Leicester? Will we see the first team or the backup players?
I think it’s fairly important this season. It’s very unlikely we’ll be in the running for a European spot so a comfortable League campaign and a cup run (or two) is likely to be the focus. That said, the previous round showed that we’ll likely rotate plenty of the first team, with a relatively big squad it’s the chance for some fringe players to show what they can do.
3. You have signed a few new players in the summer, tell us a bit about your new additions.
The only one we’ve really seen enough of is Harry Maguire. He looks really impressive at the back, especially with the ball at his feet and he’s a danger from set pieces too. We paid around £18m and I think that could be seen as a real bargain in a couple of years. The jury is still out on the likes of Iheanacho, Iborra and Dragovic because they’ve not played but this game may well give us a chance to see what they’re all about.
4. You decided to keep Shakespeare as manager, what has he brought to the team?
I think the key thing has been stability. His experience with Nigel Pearson means he knows this squad and the club extremely well and steadied the ship after the uncertainty of Ranieri’s departure. There’s been a return to the successful 4-4-2 approach and he got the players back on track. He’s still inexperienced as a manager though, so there’ll still be moments where his decisions might not be the best, especially substitutions, but he’s earned his chance at the top job for sure.
5. What kind of game do you think we will see?
Probably a very open one with plenty of goals. Rotation often means some players are slightly short of match fitness and I always think defensive errors are more likely in those sorts of line-ups. Leicester love to play on the counter attack so I expect Liverpool to force the issue and we’ll see if the tactic is as effective as it has been when the first team do it