Premier League • England

‘Leeds will eat you’ – Klopp wary with Liverpool selections hinted; rates Firmino, Jota cup final chances

Jurgen Klopp Liverpool

Jurgen Klopp claimed Leeds will “eat you” alive if you’re not at it from minute one, and provided an injury update on forward pair Roberto Firmino and Diogo Jota.

Liverpool host Leeds United on Wednesday night in a fixture rearranged from its initial Boxing Day billing. The contest was postponed due to a Covid outbreak at the time, and was slotted into late-February just four days before the EFL Cup final.

Liverpool will travel to Wembley to face Chelsea on Sunday. However, any suggestions Liverpool could field a weakened team tomorrow night have been dispelled by Klopp.

The Reds are now just six points behind Man City in the Premier League and hold a game in hand. As such, Klopp is not looking past Leeds, and insisted the Whites will “eat” his team up if they’re not on top form.

“Leeds man mark all over the pitch so if you are not in the game then Leeds will eat you,” said Klopp in his Tuesday press conference (via the Liverpool Echo).

“They are leading in three decisive running stats (in the Premier League). You have to be ready for these runs and they never give up on top of that. Some spectacular results in both directions.

“Leeds fight to stay in this league and they really never give up so we have to make sure we cannot help tomorrow. We have a lot of work to do.”

In regards to whether he’ll select his strongest available eleven versus Leeds, Klopp said: “I didn’t think about Sunday’s team.

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“One thing I’ve learned is it doesn’t work for me to have 2 or 3 games in my mind. We try everything for this [Leeds] game.

“We didn’t make Norwich changes for Leeds or final, we needed to rest some. Exactly how we do it now.”

Klopp provides Firmino, Jota injury updates

Liverpool were without both recognised centre-forwards Jota and Firmino for the Canaries clash on Saturday.

Jota is out with minor ankle ligament damage, while Firmino was missing through an unspecified muscle injury.

Klopp confirmed neither player will be fit to line up against Leeds. However, he did state they are both “pushing” to feature against Chelsea at Wembley.

“No chance for tomorrow, Sunday we will see,” added Klopp.

“It will be easier for me to say no now but they are pushing. Not on the pitch for training which is not a good sign. We’ll make a decision in the week.”

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