Liverpool vs. Leicester City
League Cup (Third Round) | Anfield
September 27, 2023 | 7.45pm (BST)
When they were relegated last season, Liverpool thought they would have a Leicester-free year this season.
Alas, the Reds have drawn the Foxes at the first time of asking in the League Cup. It does present a good opportunity for progression against the Championship side, though.
Here’s everything you need to know ahead of Liverpool vs. Leicester.
1. “Too soon” for Trent
The right-back, thankfully, was back in parts of training on Monday with his teammates, but Saturday’s trip to Tottenham is the match that is expected to herald his return.
Thiago, meanwhile, is in “a good way” but he has yet to make a full training return as his individual rehabilitation continues following hip surgery at the back-end of last season.
There were no other injuries to report, but Lijnders did confirm that “changes” will be made to the lineup.
2. Straight to penalties, if needed
With no extra time until the semi-final stage, every League Cup match that is level after the final whistle will go directly to a penalty shootout.
The Reds have won their last four penalty shootouts, and that includes one against the Foxes back in 2021 – Jurgen Klopp‘s men won both domestic cups from the spot in 2021/22.
Not sure our nerves should be put to the test this early, though!
3. How many changes?
You sense Liverpool’s lineup could be a predictable one when we consider how Klopp rotated for the first Europa League clash, with a not too dissimilar XI likely.
From Sunday’s league match, 11 changes would not come as a surprise as Lijnders stated on the eve of the clash that “we need to make changes, it’s a given in a period like this.”
Predicted Reds XI: Kelleher; Bajcetic, Konate, Quansah, Tsimikas; Endo, Elliott, Gravenberch; Doak, Jota, Gakpo
4. Man City chase the record
Throughout its various iterations, Liverpool have enjoyed the League Cup; the Reds have won the competition nine times – more than anyone else.
Man City are now close behind, though, with five successes in six attempts between 2016 and 2021 taking their overall tally to eight.
This season, Virgil van Dijk will be hoping to lift the trophy for a second time and extend the club record. Should he do it, it would be his first trophy – hopefully, of many – as Liverpool captain.
5. Life in the Championship
Italian manager Enzo Maresca took over from Dean Smith in the summer and has won nine of his first 10 games at Leicester.
The Foxes are expected to come straight back up to the top flight, but the Championship is notoriously unpredictable. They are, though, currently top of the table and Jamie Vardy is still scoring goals – three in nine so far this season.
The last round also saw them travel to Merseyside, beating Tranmere 2-0 after knocking Burton Albion out by the same scoreline in the first round.
Possible Leicester XI: Stolarczyk; Pereira, Faes, Vestergaard, Justin; Casadei, Ndidi, Winks; Akgun, Iheanacho, Mavididi
6. No VAR
There will be no VAR for this one.
Tim Robinson takes charge of a Liverpool game for the first time as referee, having acted as fourth official on two previous occasions for the Reds.
The official was promoted to the PGMOL’s Select Group One in the summer and has refereed two Premier League matches so far this season.
Simon Bennett and Daniel Robathan are the assistant referees, while David Webb takes the fourth official role.
7. Not televised in the UK
Thankfully, you can still keep up to date with everything that’s going on with This Is Anfield.
Adam Beattie will be running the matchday live blof and there will be the usual build-up and reaction to events at Anfield.
8. Last time we met Leicester…
Liverpool didn’t enjoy a succesful season last time around, but they still did the double over Leicester.
Most recently, they beat Dean Smith’s Foxes 3-0 at the King Power Stadium in May. It was a game that will mainly be remembered as a demonstration of Scouse power.
That match was part of the 18-game unbeaten run Liverpool are currently on.
9. A surprising statistic
Liverpool have not won a League Cup tie in normal time at Anfield in the last seven matches – a crazy statistic given the Reds won the competition in 2022.
On the bright side, Liverpool have failed to score in only two of the last 29 home encounters in all competitions against Leicester.
Vardy could be the opposition’s danger man. He has a good record against Liverpool, scoring 10 goals in his 17 appearances against the Reds in all competitions.
10. Follow the match with TIA
Liverpool vs. Leicester is not live on television in the UK, but you can stay up to date This Is Anfield and check in with our worldwide TV guide prior to kick-off.
TIA’s matchday live blog will be up and running from 7pm, with Adam Beattie tasked with keeping you entertained and up-to-date.
The match kicks off at 7.45pm (BST).
Come on you Reds!