Liverpool have already dropped two team selection hints ahead of Derby County clash

Liverpool prepare to face Derby County in the third roun of the Carabao Cup at Anfield.

Liverpool start their defence of the Carabao Cup when they welcome Derby County to Anfield tomorrow (20.00 GMT).

The Reds claimed the silverware last season when defeating Chelsea on penalties at Wembley. Now they aim to keep the trophy at Anfield.

Jurgen Klopp is expected to make changes to the line-up that defeated Tottenham Hotspur 2-1 in the Premier League last weekend. The likes of Virgil van Dijk, Mo Salah, Alisson Becker and Thiago Alcantara can be expected to be handed much-needed respite.

Fringe players are set to be involved, as well as some youngsters from Liverpool’s under-21s. And two selection hints have already been dropped to face League One outfit Derby.

It is expected that Nat Phillips will make just a second start of the season. The centre-back spent the second half of last season on loan at AFC Bournemouth where he helped them to promotion to the Premier League. And despite there being summer interest in Phillips, he was kept at Anfield following injuries to Ibrahima Konate and Joel Matip.

Unsurprisingly, Phillips has been on the periphery of things for much of the campaign. His only outing came in a 1-1 draw against Crystal Palace in August when Virgil van Dijk was the only other fit senior central defender, with Konate, Matip and Joe Gomez missing.

It's anticipated that Phillips will feature against Derby - especially after last weekend. The former Bolton Wanderers defender was not on the bench for Klopp's side's victory over Tottenham. Instead, Phillips featured for the under-21s in a 3-1 victory against Fulham at the AXA Training Centre.

He got 45 minutes under his belt, with his early withdrawal suggest he was being saved for the Derby clash.

Young Reds boss Barry Lewtas told the club’s website: “Nat is a great lad. I'm not just saying this but every time a senior player has come down to play for us since I've took this job they have always done it properly.

“That's credit to them but it's also credit to the first-team environment. Nat is a real good guy who is good around the lads. The lads look up to him and he is a really good example to the younger players.”

In addition, Bobby Clark was another who came off at the interval. The 17-year-old, the son of former Premier League player Lee, joined the Reds from Newcastle United in February for a fee that could reach £1.5 million.

Clark, a midfielder, has made 10 appearances for the under-21s this season, as well as playing five times for the under-19s in the UEFA Youth League.

The England youth international could well be set for an outing in the engine room.