Report: 24-year-old Liverpool player now set to come back and start the Carabao Cup final vs Chelsea

Jurgen Klopp does not have a lot of wiggle room with his Liverpool team ahead of Sunday’s Carabao Cup final.

Having been able to call on just 14 senior players for Wednesday’s win over Luton Town, the Liverpool manager is being badly restricted by injuries.

Nevertheless, there is still the possibility to bring some fresh legs in to face Chelsea at Wembley.

Looking at the Reds team news ahead of the game today, the Liverpool ECHO report that Klopp is set to make at least one change to the XI that beat Luton.

That is set to come at centre-back, where Jarell Quansah is ‘likely’ to make way for Ibrahima Konate. Konate was an unused substitute midweek, seemingly with the final in mind. He’ll reportedly be back in against the Blues.

The ECHO suggest that Klopp could actually surprisingly make up to four more changes. The most likely would pertain to be Andy Robertson coming in at left-back, with the other possible switches said to be fitness related.

It wasn’t really a surprise to see Konate rested against Luton. Given all of the other issues Liverpool currently have and the Frenchman’s tendency to break down without warning, it seemed like a smart move.

With so many other key players missing in midfield and in attack, the Reds can at least ensure that their defence is as strong as it can possibly be.

Of course, without Alisson Becker this is still not a complete Liverpool defence. But Caoimhin Kelleher was always going to be the man for Sunday, anyway.

Trent Alexander-Arnold is also still missing, but Conor Bradley is a more than able deputy.

As a result, a defence of Bradley, Konate, Virgil van Dijk and Robertson looks strong enough to keep the door shut.

From Konate’s point of view, this little nod to his importance in the side completes his transition into Van Dijk’s key partner.

Two years ago, with the same final coming up, the 24-year-old was still very much a squad player. He started on the bench that day, coming on for extra-time, with Joel Matip being favoured.

It would have been an interesting decision for Klopp had Matip been fit for this one. But in the 32-year-old’s absence, Konate has quickly become the main man.

With Liverpool missing so many on the big stage this weekend, the Reds’ No.5 looks set to step up. That, finally, is some good news.


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