Jurgen Klopp must ponder debut for in-form rookie as Liverpool can’t ignore Ibrahima Konate

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An early look at the questions that will be posed to Jurgen Klopp ahead of Liverpool vs Napoli in the Champions League with a debut for Calvin Ramsay an option.

Jurgen Klopp faces another period back to the drawing board after Liverpool’s latest defeat.

The Reds’ stuttering form in the Premier League as they suffered a 2-1 loss to Leeds United. That meant that Liverpool lost successive league games against teams who started the day in the relegation zone, having suffered a 1-0 reverse to basement side Nottingham Forest.

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It’s a difficult period for Klopp and he knows he has to turn things around. The Reds have a quick turnaround when they face Napoli in the final Champiosn League Group A game on Tuesday at Anfield.

Both are already into the last 16 of the competition so the pressure is off, although Liverpool will be desperate for a win for confidence.

With that in mind, we take an early look at the selection questions that are posed to Klopp.

Goalkeeper and Defence

Alisson Becker was partly to blame for Leeds' opener when he slipped over trying to get to Joe Gomez's poor pass.

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But the goalkeeper has plenty of credit in the bank this season, having been arguably Liverpool's best player.

Klopp has a decision to make on Ibrahima Konate. The Reds boss hasn't wanted to risk the France international so far after playing just twice this season. Another period on the sidelines would be a hammer blow.

And with there not being much to play for against Napoli, Klopp may not want Konate to potentially pick up another setback and save him for the Spurs game. But at some point, Konate has to get some minutes under his belt. Perhaps a 45-minute cameo in the first half could be the way for him to build fitness.

That may see Gomez dropped to the bench after making another error with a blind backpass for Alisson.

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Playing alongside Konate could also be good preparation for Virgil van Dijk, who was caught as still as a statue when Alisson missed Gomez's pass, if that was to be the plan against Tottenham. Nat Phillips may be hoping to get some minutes, having not played since August.

To their credit, full-backs Andy Robertson and Trent Alexander-Arnold were two of the Reds' better performers against Leeds. Robertson created Mo Salah's equaliser and put plenty of hard yards in down the left. It could make sense to give him a rest and bring in Kostas Tsimikas.

Meanwhile, Calvin Ramsay got an hour under his belt and scored in the under-21s' 3-0 defeat of West Ham United. That was his second goal in three outings for Barry Lewtas’ side. Ramsay is in form and the Napoli encounter could be the ideal game to finally be handed a full debut after signing from Aberdeen in the summer.


A diamond formation was again deployed against Leeds but to much less effect than in the Ajaz victory. Liverpool couldn't get the control in the engine room required.

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The way Fabinho's form has jettisoned this campaign is a major concern. The Brazil international was yet again well below par and looks a shadow of himself.

Jordan Henderson has played the number-six role before and looks like the better option as things stand. He could only come off the bench at the weekend following a knee issue. Or James Milner is an option to take up that role.

Thiago Alcantara couldn't get on the ball as much as he'd have liked on his return but was still the Reds' best midfield performer. Another outing after missing two games could make sense.

Harvey Elliott's had an intense schedule and deserves plenty of credit. However, aged 19, it's time to hand the youngster a breather. And Curtis Jones, who made an impact off the bench against Leeds could come in.

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Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Naby Keita are both ineligible, while Arthur Melo is injured for the long term.


Klopp has limited forward options at his disposal with injuries to Luis Diaz and Diogo Jota.

The Liverpool manager wants to build rhythm but knows that some respite will be needed.

Roberto Firmino couldn't influence things as he'd have liked in an attacking midfield role and spurned a gilt-edged chance in the 83rd minute.

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If Klopp pursues with a diamond system then Jones or Fabio Carvalho are options to take up the mantle.

Or if Liverpool were to revert back to his tried-and-trusted 4-3-3 formation, the pair can also play wide left.

Darwin Nunez also couldn't take advantage of two golden opportunities. However, it's another game for the striker to continue acclimatising as the Reds' number nine.

Salah bagged his 11th goal of the season against Leeds and is likely to continue.

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