Liverpool’s USA pre-season tour will end of with a meeting against arch-rivals Manchester United.
This will be the Reds third game in the States, having been beaten 3-1 by Borussia Dortmund before overcoming Manchester City 2-1. The friendly against United however will represent something different, with many Reds eager to claim one over their nemesis.
In anticipation of the clash against the Red Devils, here’s what we can expect from the International Champions Cup match.
Mourinho To Be The Villain Once More
Even though the season has yet to begin, Mourinho cuts a sombre figure on the touchline. Whether it’s due to the lack of transfers or absentees from the squad, no one exactly knows for sure. One thing is certain however is his distaste for Liverpool, with the Portuguese wasting little time in attacking the club.
Regarding Liverpool’s expensive forays into the transfer market, the man claimed that this season “you demand that they win” the league.
Though Klopp has laughed off his counterpart’s comments, it is uncomfortable to see Mourinho engaging in mind games this early. With 14 United players, including first team regulars Nemanja Matic, Antonio Valencia and Anthony Martial ruled out of the game, Mourinho will surely set up his squad defensively. Add in his desperate desire to avoid defeat at the hands of Klopp and it isn’t hard to envision Mourinho rolling out the bus.
To the expected 100,000 fans heading to Michigan Stadium, I’m sorry that you have to suffer at the hands of boring old Mourinho.
Curtis Jones To Shine
Following an eye-catching display against Manchester City in the previous match, there is much excitement surrounding Jones. The Academy prospect have featured for much of Liverpool’s pre-season games, hinting that Klopp has plans for him.
At 17 years of age, Curtis Jones represent an exciting prospect for the future. Given the glimpses of talent shown, his rise could mirror that of fellow Academy graduate Alexander-Arnold.
Klopp, being known to give youth a chance, would definitely involve Jones against United in one way or another. Against Manchester United’s ageing full-backs, another impressive, if not respectable display, beckons the youngster.
Shaqiri To Make His Debut
One of Klopp’s summer signings, the Swiss international linked up with his team mates on Tuesday for the first time. Although he did not feature against Manchester City due to a lack of training, there is a chance he might make his debut against United.
Klopp seemed to confirm this, hinting that Shaqiri may be afforded a few minutes in Michigan. When quizzed about Shaqiri’s involvement, Klopp said: “We will see. He has had four days of training and will probably be involved in the squad, so maybe he can play a few minutes.”
With the Reds lacking senior attackers as of now, there’s a high possibility that he’ll play in one of the forward roles. It could provide the first clues on how Klopp intends to use him for the season, be it as a winger or a No. 10.
That being said, we’ll appreciate if he could open his account with a goal. Against Manchester United of all clubs!