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Before The Whistle: Liverpool v Fulham

Written by Drew Heatley on 9th January 2024

How are your nerves?

There’s no dressing it up: it’s a bloody huge game on Wednesday. Our biggest cup tie in more than a decade. And it’s a case of operation “don’t make the second leg redundant” as we go to Anfield.

Though, with a host of Liverpool players either out through injury or at the African Cup of Nations, perhaps we should be aiming higher than that. Liverpool are without Trent Alexander-Arnold, Joël Matip, Andrew Robertson, Kostas Tsimikas, Dominik Szoboszlai, Thiago Alcântara and Stefan Bajcetic thanks to injury, while Wataru Endo and Mohamed Salah are at AFCON.

Alex Iwobi, Calvin Bassey, and Fodo Ballo-Toure are all at AFCON, so are missing for the Whites. Meanwhile, Tim Ream and Adama Traore are on the treatment table.

It goes without saying that Silva will opt for the strongest XI possible, with Diop and Tosin in the middle, and Robinson left-back. Kenny Tete scored the last time we faced Liverpool at Anfield; I’d not be surprised to see him in the XI to have another crack.

Andreas Pereira’s spot in the 10 is safe with Iwobi away, but the wings are, as ever, slightly harder to predict. Willian will surely start on the left, with either Bobby De Cordova-Reid or Harry Wilson on the right – I’d not be disappointed with either.

I guess the biggest uncertainty is Tom Cairney. With possession expected to be a luxury, Silva might opt for more steel alongside Palhinha. But if I’ve said it once, I’ve said it 1,000 times: Tom Cairney’s about moments. If we want to make moments, we need TC on the pitch.

We can’t understate the importance of this game to our season – and to our history. I’m sure the boys will rise to the occasion. You Whites.


Kick-Off: Wednesday, 8.00PM
Stadium: Anfield
Competition: Carabao Cup
TV Channel (UK): Sky Sports (UK)


Liverpool: ✅ ✅ ⬜ ⬜ ✅ ✅
Fulham: ✅ ✅ ❌ ❌ ❌ ✅


Dec 23: Liverpool 4-3 Fulham
May 23: Liverpool 1-0 Fulham
Aug 22: Fulham 2-2 Liverpool
Mar 21: Liverpool 0-1 Fulham

🎙 NEW PODCAST: Rotherham didn’t Botheram

Review of Fulham’s FA Cup third round home win against Rotherham and a look ahead to Liverpool in Wednesday’s Carabao Cup semi final.


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