Liverpool play Manchester City in the first final of the season in the Capital One Cup at Wembley. Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp could potentially win his first trophy at Liverpool whereas Manuel Pellegrini will hope to win at least one trophy in his final season at Man City.
City will have confidence after their Champions League win in against Dynamo Kiev. Whereas Liverpool put in a mediocre performance in their win against Augsburg. During his press conference Pellegrini said “I always want to win all the trophies that I participate”.
During Klopp’s press conference, he refused to discuss any tactics before the game, saying: “I think even in Manchester they have televisions.” Klopp will be able to call on an almost full strength squad for the final.
Sturridge and Coutinho were brought off in the second-half against Augsburg and Klopp will be hoping these two perform at their very best if they are going to beat Man City. Firmino and Coutinho have excelled under Klopp, with their flair and technical ability. They have gained a good understanding with each other and playing behind Sturridge, this has the potential to be a very good attacking line-up. Liverpool will need Roberto Firmino, Philippe Coutinho and Daniel Sturridge to play well if they are going to win.
Pellegrini will surely play a strong side, with him leaving in the summer, he will want to add to the two trophies he has already won at City. Last Sunday, Pellegrini named a very youthful side against Chelsea in the FA Cup – losing 5-1. They were rested for the midweek Champions League game against Dynamo Kiev and the team looked refreshed as they ran out 3-1 winners. City will face the Reds twice in the space of four days as they play each other again in the league on Wednesday.
Liverpool will take confidence from the last time they played Man City. Liverpool were unplayable at times as they won 4-1 in one of Klopp’s first games in charge. He installed quick pressing play and they looked a completely different team under the German.
Liverpool’s Adam Lallana, Joe Allen and defender Martin Skrtel are all back in training but they might not be fit enough to play. Centre-back Dejan Lovren is fit to play and will most likely play alongside Sakho in defence.
Manchester City striker Wilfried Bony, winger Jesus Navas and defender Eliaquim Mangala could all return to play and Pellegrini is hopeful captain Vincent Kompany, former Liverpool winger Raheem Sterling and right-back Bacary Sagna can play.
Liverpool possible starting lineup:
Mignolet; Clyne, Toure, Lovren, Moreno; Henderson, Can; Milner, Firmino, Coutinho; Sturridge
Man City possible starting lineup:
Hart; Zabaleta, Kompany, Otamendi, Clichy; Fernando, Fernandinho; Silva, Toure, Sterling; Aguero
- This will be Liverpool’s 12th League Cup final, a record for the competition. Of the previous 11, they’ve lifted the trophy eight times – between 1981 and 2012 – most recently against Cardiff on penalties.
- Manchester City have been in four previous League Cup finals, winning in 1970, 1976 and most recently in 2014 against Sunderland. They were runners-up in 1974, losing to Wolves.
- This will be the first Liverpool v Manchester City final in any competition.
- In cup competition, Liverpool are unbeaten in their last eight games against City (W6 D2) – last losing in an FA Cup fourth-round replay in 1973.
Prediction: Liverpool 1-2 Man City