The one Liverpool player who has to start against Arsenal made clear after West Ham win

Liverpool were in fine form against West Ham and are gearing up for a huge Premier League clash with Arsenal this weekend.
Curtis Jones of Liverpool celebrates. (Photo by Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)Curtis Jones of Liverpool celebrates. (Photo by Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)
Curtis Jones of Liverpool celebrates. (Photo by Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

Liverpool comfortably swept aside West Ham in the EFL Cup quarter-finals but the 5-1 victory showed Jurgen Klopp exactly who needs to start against Arsenal this weekend.

With injuries to key players forcing his hand, the absence of Alexis Mac Allister in midfield will pose an important dilemma. Dominik Szoboszlai is nailed on to start, but there's one player who can replicate the style of Mac Allister and help them comfortably play out from the back against what will be a high-pressing and high-energy Arsenal side.

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Curtis Jones was the man of the match against West Ham and while he showed a different dynamic to his game after netting twice, his overall play and calmness on the ball was apparent and he will surely be a key starter for the game at Anfield on Saturday.

The two goals he scored caught the eye and made the headlines but his two key passes and 93% pass success rate (62/69) showcases his strengths aptly. His passing success average of 92% per Premier League game and 97% in his own half both better Mac Allister's and being able to pick up the ball from deeper positions is something that is missing when the Argentine isn't in the side.

We could see Wataru Endo feature again as well, at the heart of midfield to play in conjunction with Jones, similar to how Mac Allister has operated with the 22-year-old. The Japanese captain is beginning to find his feet and produced nine recoveries (most for Liverpool) won the most fouls on the pitch, played four key passes, won four of his six duels and had a 96% pass accuracy which is certainly a contender for his best performance yet since signing from Stuttgart in the summer.

A midfield three of Endo, Jones and Szoboszlai should have the right amount of technical, tactical and physical work rate to compete with Declan Rice, Martin Odegaard and Kai Havertz and it makes for a fascinating midfield battle which will surely be key to the overall result. Klopp has options off the bench in the form of Harvey Elliott and potentially Ryan Gravenberch if he can recover in time.

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But Jones has already shown he has improved and gone to another level this season and his early season form was disrupted by injury and then the somewhat-controversial red card against Tottenham. In terms of right now, he is back in contention, back in form and ready to make an impact in the big games for Liverpool - and Arsenal is certainly going to be a test like no other.