Leeds United host Liverpool in the Premier League on Sunday, with the Reds looking to continue their unbeaten start to the season. Jurgen Klopp’s outfit won twice and drew against Chelsea prior to the international break, meaning victory here would push them joint-top of the table with the early front-runners. The Reds might also start opt to rotating their starting line-up this weekend, following game time in the internationals and with the Champions League starting up in midweek.
Marcelo Bielsa’s men are yet to win in the Premier League, though they have rebounded with two draws since an opening weekend hammering against Manchester United. Leeds also picked up a midweek win in the EFL Cup prior to the internationals, against lower-league opposition in Crewe.
Liverpool are able to call upon Fabinho and Alisson and Raphinha could feature too for Leeds, after the late reversal of the decision to prohibit the South Americans who did not go on international duty from playing this weekend.
Follow all the match updates and live action below as Leeds host Liverpool:
Klopp on Bielsa and Leeds
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp spoke during the week about what he expects from today’s game saying:
“In general, Marcelo Bielsa’s style and philosophy and how they defend is different, it’s man-marking over the whole pitch. So you have to know about it,
“Against Leeds, high intense, they go for it. They are good in possession, I think so far second or third in possession. Didn’t have the points yet they want to have but they for sure think they have a good chance against us. But they didn’t play us yet in this season.
“We are hopefully good, as good as we can, and then we are difficult to play. How always, when we are difficult to play we have a chance to win – and that’s what we try.”
Leeds vs Liverpool
Mohamed Salah is one away from becoming the 30th player to reach 100 Premier League goals - and just the second African to reach the milestone after Didier Drogba.
He could become the fifth quickest player to reach the milestone, having played 161 games, behind Alan Shearer (124), Harry Kane (141), Sergio Aguero (147) and Thierry Henry (160).
Leeds vs Liverpool
Liverpool’s 13-match unbeaten league run, with 10 wins and three draws, is currently the longest in the division. They have won seven of their last eight away league games, including their last four in a row.
The Reds have conceded just once so far this season and will hope that a stable backline will help them lay the foundations for another title challenge.
Why Liverpool’s lack of signings is no cause for concern
For some fans, the most exciting part of the season is over. The transfer window is shut and there can be no more delusional fantasies about big money signings for a while. This is where reality bites.
Most Liverpool supporters are, like Jurgen Klopp, relatively happy with the state of the squad going into the next phase of the campaign, which starts at Elland Road against Leeds United on Sunday.
Nevertheless, there have been rumblings of dissatisfaction about the club’s spending in the summer. The only significant signing was Ibrahima Konate, who cost £36 million from RB Leipzig. The 22-year-old centre half bolsters the ranks at last season’s problem position but some expected Georginio Wijnaldum, who departed for Paris Saint-Germain on a free transfer, to be replaced.
A small minority have expressed anger at FSG’s reluctance to spend this summer - but the successful American ownership have always said they would be fiscally cautious
Leeds vs Liverpool
Marcelo Bielsa’s side are unbeaten in seven top-flight matches at Elland Road with three wins and four draws. They haven’t fared better since a 15-game streak in 2001.
Patrick Bamford is on 98 career league goals and has scored four times in his last seven Premier League appearances including a point saving equaliser last time out against Burnley. Can the England international upset Liverpool this afternoon?
Leeds vs Liverpool
Leeds could fail to win any of their first four top-flight matches in a season for the first time since 1958-59.
Defeat today would also equal their longest winless run in the league under Marcelo Bielsa.
Raphinha: The explosive Leeds attacker Liverpool have long admired
A talent spotter, currently working for a top Premier League club, calls it the “scouting sea”. The Copa Sao Paulo, Brazil’s most acclaimed youth tournament, is where “we flood to because there are so many fish. The only thing outnumbering the talent is the scouts that come to find the next gem”.
Those whose job it is to scour the South American market for gifted footballers that can crack it in Europe often say it is the less-hyped, under-the-radar starlets that catch the eye. And the prospectives identified at such tournaments chiefly form the basis of the long game, where they are scanned over several years in different systems, settings, and expectation levels.
At the 2016 Copa Sao Paulo, one such player had peaked Liverpool’s interest: a wide forward from Avai that could operate on either flank with a fondness for getting into goalscoring positions.
The Brazilian winger has started to establish himself amongst the Premier League’s best – but that will come as no surprise to those clubs who’ve tracked him since he was a teenager
Leeds vs Liverpool - Team news changes
Marcelo Bielsa makes just one change to the Leeds starting XI from the team that drew 1-1 with Burnley before the international break. Junior Firpo returns from injury and replaces Pascal Struijk in the backline with Bielsa reverting to four at the back.
Jurgen Klopp swaps out two players for his starting XI. Thiago Alcantara comes into the midfield in place of Jordan Henderson whilst Diogo Jota replaces the injured Roberto Firmino up top.
Team news - Leeds vs Liverpool
Leeds XI: Meslier; Ayling, Cooper, Llorente, Firpo; Phillips, Dallas; Raphinha, Rodrigo, Harrison; Bamford
Liverpool XI: Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Van Dijk, Robertson; Fabinho, Thiago, Elliott; Mane, Salah, Jota
Leeds vs Liverpool prediction: How will Premier League fixture play out today?
Liverpool will face Leeds at Elland Road in the Premier League in front of fans for the first time since 2004 when they meet in the Premier League this afternoon.
The two sides played out a 1-1 draw in this fixture at Elland Road last season, in a match that was overshadowed by the announcement of the ill-fated European Super League and was played behind closed doors.
Everything you need to know ahead of the Premier League fixture
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