Liverpool are likely to give rest to some of their first team players as they take on Swansea City in the fourth round of the Capital One Cup tie tonight at Anfield. The competition is lowest of Liverpool’s priorities this season, but it represents a good opportunity for several players to make a strong impression and put the manager into a selection dilemma.
Rickie Lambert, whose playing time has been restricted by the addition of Mario Balotelli this season, understands he must seize the opportunity at Anfield tonight. The 32-year-old has started only once for his boyhood club (against Middlesbrough in the third round of the Capital One Cup) since his £4.5m move from Southampton in the summer and is all set to make his second start of the season against Gary Monk’s team on Tuesday night.
“I think it is a chance to impress if I am playing and I hope I am,” Lambert said. “That is exactly what it is. It’s a chance to shine and do well and try to get on the scoresheet.”
Mamadou Sakho is still a week away from returning to full fitness, which means either of Lovren of Skrtel will play, while Kolo Toure may get a rare chance.
In the last round, Jordan Rossiter made a big impression and the youngster is likely to start in the midfield alongside Lucas Leiva. Lazar Markovic has struggled to settle down since his big money move for Benfica, may get another opportunity to impress. Here is the possible Liverpool starting line up:
Prediction: With several players eager to prove a point or two, expect Liverpool to play with more purpose and aggression; 2-1 for the home side.