Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp has already made a number of signings since the conclusion of the 2015/16 Premier League campaign, bringing in goalkeeper Loris Karius, centre-back Joël Matip and forward Sadio Mané.
The German tactician has strengthened in crucial positions, but could be tempted to add more fresh faces to his squad if the right players become available. Any future business will also depend on who else departs Anfield ahead of the new season.
We look at the starting line-up Klopp could select for the opening day of the Premier League season…
Goalkeeper: Loris Karius
Klopp wasted little time in securing the services of the promising goalkeeper in the off-season, with Karius tipped for big things in the coming years. While last year’s first-choice keeper Simon Mignolet showed signs of improvement, the Belgian is unlikely to be the Reds’ undisputed number one in the coming campaign. In fact, Karius snapped up the number-one jersey upon his arrival, hinting that Mignolet is indeed facing a season on the substitutes bench.
Left-back: Jonas Hector
Another player plying is trade in Germany’s top flight, Hector has emerged as one of the best full-backs in world football over the past two seasons. However, having been handed the Köln captaincy towards the end of last season, Hector is bound to command a massive transfer fee if the Bundesliga outfit do decide to listen to offers.
Centre-back: Joël Matip
One of Klopp’s first signings as Liverpool manager, Cameroon international Joël Matip recently joined the Merseysiders on a free transfer after his Schalke contract expired. Standing at 6 ft 5 in, Matip is expected to add more aerial presence to a Reds backline that has struggled to keep clean sheets in recent seasons.
Centre-back: Mamadou Sakho
The France international showed signs of inconsistency at the start of his Liverpool career, but played his way into a regular starting place under the watchful eye of Klopp in the second half of the 2015/16 campaign. And, after having his doping charge dismissed by UEFA recently, Sakho is likely to beat Dejan Lovren to starting place alongside Matip.
Right-back: Nathaniel Clyne
Arguably one of Liverpool’s best players last season, Clyne has seemingly cemented his place in the starting XI under Klopp. Having been brought in to replace Glen Johnson, Clyne’s ability to defend and also bomb forward on attack has made him a favourite with Liverpool fans.
Central midfield: Emre Can
Liverpool’s Young Player of the Year last season, Can flourished in a regular starting role in the centre of midfield. Boasting a keen eye for a pass and a high workrate, the Germany international looks set to enjoy a rewarding and lengthy career at Anfield for many years to come.
Central midfield: Philippe Coutinho
Having recently turned 24, Coutinho is in the prime of his career, and after scooping the club’s Player of the Year accolade at the end-of-season awards ceremony, the Brazil international is poised for a massive season. His exploits have not gone unnoticed, though, as the off-season transfer window has seen the attacking midfielder linked with the likes of PSG and Barcelona. However, the Reds are expected to reject the advances of the aforementioned duo.
Central midfield: Mahmoud Dahoud
A transfer rumour that refuses to go away, Borussia Mönchengladbach midfielder Dahoud has been heavily linked with a switch to the English Premier League side ahead of the new campaign. At just 20 years old, Syria-born Dahoud is widely regarded as the most talented youngster in Germany and would command a massive transfer fee.
Left attacking midfield: Roberto Firmino
As one of Liverpool’s most expensive signings in the summer of 2015, Firmino went on to enjoy a successful first campaign at Anfield. The Brazil international showed a propensity to perform in big games, contributing assists and goals in equal measure. His versatility means he is all but assured a starting berth, be it out wide on the left or in the hole, behind the lone frontman.
Right attacking midfield: Sadio Mané
Following in the footsteps of several former Southampton team-mates, big things are expected from Mané in the upcoming season. The 24-year-old Senegal international was a long-term transfer target for Klopp, who finally got his man for a reported fee of £34 million. It remains to be seen whether he will be able to live up to expectations, but based on his performances last season, he could prove to be a key addition to the Reds squad.
Striker: Daniel Sturridge
While Sturridge’s injury problems have been well publicised, the striker played a key role for the Reds after being eased back into the first-team fold by Klopp last season. Despite missing a large chunk of the campaign with various niggling injuries, Sturridge still finished last season with a respectable tally of 13 goals in all competitions.