Jurgen Klopp has been told to hand Thiago Alcantara a starting place against Manchester United on Sunday.
Both sides are in the hunt for the Premier League title, with reigning champions Liverpool without a win in three games in the top flight.
That has allowed Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s United to close the gap, with the fierce rivals now neck and neck in the race to lift the title.
United’s unexpected title challenge places even more importance on Sunday’s match at Anfield, with the victor set to take top spot in the Premier League.
The significance of the latest edition of the rivalry between Liverpool and United has not been lost on Reds legend John Aldridge.
Aldridge views the final ball as being key to Liverpool taking the three points, with former Bayern Munich star Thiago tipped to start.
“Team selection is up to the manager but when you’re thinking about the final ball and picking people out in the 18-yard box – Andy Robertson and Trent Alexander-Arnold have been magnificent for the last few years,” Aldridge wrote in his Liverpool Echo column.
“And from midfield, there is no better player to see that pass than Thiago. That’s his forte.
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“Whoever the manager plays in there – we don’t know as he’s got a lot of options – but at the moment he is the one that’ll see that killer pass more than anyone.”
Aldridge is under no illusion as to the importance of Liverpool turning around their recent poor form, with Manchester City also gaining on the Reds.
“Manchester City are having a run and if you let them get away, they’re going to be hard to catch,” he wrote.
“City mean business, you can see them putting a serious set of results together. We expected they would but we’ve dropped our form and we can’t afford to drop many more points.
“We’ve got to get our act together away from home and let the home results look after themselves, which hopefully they will.”
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