Klopp to ring the changes, six Academy graduates start; Liverpool 4-2-3-1 v Watford
PREVIEW By North-west correspondent Alex Stevens
Jurgen Klopp is set to ring the changes for the fifth consecutive weekend as he makes full use of his squad in the wake of Thursday night’s Europa League triumph over Villarreal.
The Merseysiders host Watford on Sunday and, with hopes of a top-four finish now over, a shadow team is set to be selected due to the short turnaround between matches.
The German manager made nine changes for the 3-1 defeat to Swansea last weekend as he rested key players and he could go two further by altering his entire line-up for the latest Premier League showdown.
With the first-teamers set to be wrapped in cotton wool as Liverpool keep them fresh for their first European final in nine years on 18 May, the youngsters will be once again be given their chance to shine.
Brad Smith and Connor Randall are likely to start in the full-back positions, Kevin Stewart and Cameron Brannagan could be handed starting slots in the central midfield positions and Sheyi Ojo and Jordon Ibe out wide.
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Danny Ward, 22, joined Liverpool when he was 19 and did not graduate from the club’s academy like the others but he could replace Simon Mignolet in goal and start his third Premier League match of the season.
Christian Benteke has come off the bench in the last three Liverpool matches, scoring against Swansea last weekend, and he could be given the chance to start his first league encounter since early January.
Liverpool (possible): Ward; Randall, Skrtel, Lucas, Smith; Stewart, Allen; Ojo, Brannagan, Ibe; Benteke.