Jurgen Klopp faces Thiago Alcantara conundrum as Liverpool consider forward change – Liverpool Echo

Liverpool saw their 100% home Premier League record ended on a frustrating afternoon against West Bromwich Albion.

Sadio Mane’s early strike for the Reds was equalised late on by the visitors in a 1-1 draw at Anfield on Sunday afternoon.

The Premier League and world champions now have a quick turnaround before they head to Newcastle United for their second game over the festive period.

And here we look ahead to the changes Jurgen Klopp could make when his team are next in action.

A piece for Rhys?

Joel Matip is unlikely to be available as the Reds await the result of scans on a suspected adductor problem that forced him off at the weekend.

Rhys Williams replaced Matip on the hour and would appear the more likely partner to Fabinho at centre-back ahead of Nat Phillips.

Jordan Henderson could do a job there, but Klopp is unlikely to want to take the skipper out of midfield from the start.

Neco Williams will almost certainly be given a start in the coming games, and will be pushing Trent Alexander-Arnold at St James’ Park.

Andy Robertson is expected to continue at left-back, although the fit-again James Milner is another option.

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The Thiago question

This game has been earmarked as Thiago Alcantara’s long-awaited return to action after more than two months out with a knee problem.

If it’s from the bench, then Klopp at least has plentiful options in the engine room, even if Naby Keita misses out again as is anticipated.

Henderson, Gini Wijnaldum and Curtis Jones started against West Brom but at least one is likely to be rotated to the bench.

It means Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Xherdan Shaqiri and Milner are options, as well as Thiago.

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Minamino knocking

Liverpool looked a little short of ideas up front come full-time against West Brom, and it may be ripe for further rotation in the forward line.

Takumi Minamino did well at Crystal Palace last week and had a good performance at Newcastle on the final day of last season.

And Klopp has the other option of asking the Japan international to join the regular front three if Liverpool employ a 4-2-3-1 approach.

Oxlade-Chamberlain, Shaqiri and Divock Origi are other alternatives.