Fulham will aim to overturn a one-goal deficit when they welcome Liverpool to Craven Cottage for the second leg of their Carabao Cup semi-final on Wednesday night.
Willian had given the Cottagers a first-half lead at Anfield, but the Reds scored two goals in three second-half minutes to turn the tie on its head. Two days later, they were beaten 1-0 by West London rivals Chelsea at Stamford Bridge in the Premier League.
Having enjoyed a much-needed mini winter break, Marco Silva’s boys are now refreshed and will look to give a good account of themselves against Liverpool, who head into this cup fixture off the back of a 4-0 thrashing of Bournemouth in the Premier League.
Fulham Team News
A hamstring injury has forced Adama Traore out of the squad, while third-choice goalkeeper Benda is doubtful. Fulham will be delighted to have Tim Ream back in the squad, with the skipper now fit and ready to face Liverpool.
Predicted Fulham lineup vs Liverpool (4-2-3-1)
Marco Silva will set up his team in a 4-2-3-1 formation, with Bernd Leno continuing in goal. The German has to be at his best to keep a clean sheet against a potent Liverpool attack.
Leno is expected to be protected by the back four of Timothy Castagne, Tosin Adarabioyo, Issa Diop and Antonee Robinson. Despite Tim Ream being back fit and available, Silva is likely to stick with Tosin and Diop in central defence.
Castagne and Robinson are attacking full-backs and will try to stretch Jurgen Klopp’s side. However, with the visitors highly potent going forward and scoring goals for fun of late, the duo have to be diligent when defending.
Harrison Reed, who was an unused substitute in the 1-0 league defeat to Chelsea, is expected to be recalled into the starting XI. The Englishman should partner Joao Palhinha in central midfield, providing Andreas Pereira the base to express himself from the No.10 role.
The Fulham midfield troika have to be physical, smart on the ball and great at winning back possession if they intend to disrupt Liverpool’s natural game. Tom Cairney and Sasa Lukic could come off the bench in the second half when needed.
Willian and Bobby Decordova-Reid will provide the width on the wings for the home side, hoping to use their pace, trickery and movement to cause problems for the Liverpool backline.
Raul Jimenez should be tasked with spearheading the Fulham attack, and the Mexican has to bring his A-game to the floor to get the better of Liverpool centre-backs Virgil van Dijk and Ibrahima Konate.