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How Liverpool could line up next season

Sports Mole looks at how Liverpool could line up under Jurgen Klopp for the 2020-21 campaign.

Liverpool's immediate concern right now will be completing the 2019-20 campaign, with Jurgen Klopp's side only six points away from securing their first top-flight title for 30 years.

The coronavirus outbreak has put their celebrations on hold for now but, assuming the season does get completed, Liverpool are almost certain to be crowned champions having dropped just five points from their opening 29 games - the best ever start in Europe's top five leagues.

However, the decision-makers at Anfield will already be thinking ahead to how they can emulate that success again next term in order to assure that their return to the top of English football is not a brief one.

Here, Sports Mole looks at how the Reds could line up for the 2020-21 campaign.



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The encouraging thing for Liverpool is that they do not need major surgery to their squad - a 25-point lead at the top of the Premier League suggests that they need to do much less than the chasing pack in order to challenge for the title again next season.

Even so, there could be more action at Anfield this summer than there was last, with RB Leipzig striker Timo Werner understood to be at the top of their wanted list.

The Germany international has outscored all of Liverpool's current front three this season, netting 27 goals and registering 12 assists in 36 appearances, and could be available for relatively cheap due to a release clause in his contract.

Any arrival for Werner would inevitably cause speculation regarding the existing attacking triumvirate, and all three have already been linked with moves away - Roberto Firmino is reportedly wanted by Bayern Munich, while Real Madrid have been credited with an interest in Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah.

Liverpool are in the enviable position of not needing to sell any of their star men, though, and there is little reason for them to push for a move away given the team's on-field success in the last three seasons.

However, if Klopp is to squeeze Werner into his team alongside Firmino, Salah and Mane then he will need to rejig his preferred 4-3-3 formation and also slightly alter his side's style of play, with Werner's pace off the last man offering different options than Firmino's tendency to drop deep and create more space for Salah and Mane.

Klopp is no stranger to a 4-2-3-1 system, though; it was his formation of choice when he first arrived at Liverpool and he has regularly switched to it during his Anfield reign too, usually when the 4-3-3 'Plan A' has not been working as hoped.

Such a switch would, of course, mean that a midfielder needs to be sacrificed, and despite his fine form this season Georginio Wijnaldum appears to be the most likely of the current first-choice trio to get the chop.

Fabinho's ability to break up play is key to protecting those behind him, while captain Jordan Henderson's importance to the team has been highlighted even more this season and he is in contention for the PFA Player of the Year award, making him a shoo-in at this stage.

Players could leave, of course, but those who are likely to be on their way out are only fringe players - the likes of Adam Lallana, Xherdan Shaqiri and Dejan Lovren.

The rest of the XI is highly likely to be unchanged from this season, then, with Joe Gomez and Virgil van Dijk looking like the Liverpool centre-back partnership for many years to come and Andrew Robertson, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Alisson Becker all seemingly untouchable in their positions too.

There has been speculation linking Liverpool with big-money moves for the likes of Kai Havertz and Jadon Sancho as well, but other clubs are understood to be ahead of them in the race for those two and it could be that Werner is their only major arrival this summer.

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Timo Werner celebrates scoring for RB Leipzig on February 19, 2020
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