After a comprehensive 3-1 victory against Arsenal last week, Liverpool top the Premier League table with nine points in their opening three fixtures. However, Jurgen Klopp's men have a challenging task at their hands as they prepare to face Burnley at Turf Moor on Saturday.
Liverpool's defence - one that managed 21 clean sheets last term - has none so far in the new season. Although their minor shortcomings in the back-four haven't cost them, Klopp's men should buckle up against a physically dominating opponent in Burnley.
Thus far, the Clarets have been impressive too, with just one loss in their opening three fixtures. But, they are in for arguably their toughest test of the season up until this point.
Chris Kavanagh is the designated referee for this game.
Jurgen Klopp has worked with the same squad as last week. Alisson Becker is continuing his rehabilitation work after suffering a calf injury in the opening weekend. Naby Keita is nursing a groin issue inflicted during international duty with Guinea for Africa Cup of Nations in the summer. Right-back Nathaniel Clyne is a long-term absentee due to his knee surgery.
During Burnley's last league outing against Wolves, Sean Dyche has suffered a major blow as Johann Berg Gudmundsson was substituted due to calf issue. Aaron Lennon is expected to deputise for the Iceland international. Steven Defour and Robbie Brady too will miss out this weekend for the Clarets.
Liverpool(4-3-3): Adrian; Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Van Dijk, Robertson; Henderson, Fabinho, Wijnaldum; Salah, Firmino, Mane;
Burnley(4-4-2): Pope; Lowton, Tarkowski, Mee, Pieters; Lennon, Cork, Westwood, McNeil; Wood, Barnes.
Liverpool: Mohamed Salah
Sadio Mane has picked up right where he left off last season. Despite having a subdued outing against Arsenal, Jurgen Klopp will be hoping that his blistering left-forward is firing on all cylinders against Burnley.
After a bright performance against the Gunners, Mohamed Salah could be under special attention from the Burnley players, resulting in some unwanted free spaces for Mane to exploit.
Burnley: Ashley Barnes
For the Lancashire club to get something significant against Liverpool, Ashley Barnes should be at his clinical best to hurt the Reds. Thus far, the Burnley hitman has scored four league goals and Sean Dyche will hope that Ashley Barnes-Mark Wood duo could hurt their next opponents.
Given Liverpool's defensive issues, Virgil van Dijk and Joel Matip should monitor the 29-year-old's movements closely. Barnes' goal against Arsenal proves that he could perform against the top-dogs as well.
Liverpool, once again, look like a team to beat this season. Despite a few issues, the gulf between Klopp's side and other teams was clearly visible. Also, the current European champions would like to widen the gap between themselves and others at the top of the table at every given opportunity.
In spite of an impressive start to the season, Burnley are most likely to find themselves falling short against world-class opponents in Liverpool. The Clarets' poor record against the Reds - managing a solitary victory in their last ten Premier League encounters - hints at things to come.Published 31 Aug 2019, 18:13 IST