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News

21 Jul 2018

International Champions Cup: Liverpool vs Borussia Dortmund - Lineups, Preview & Predicition

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21:00 BST, Sunday 22nd July, Bank of America Stadium (Charlotte, NC, USA)

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Last Time Out

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Liverpool Lineup

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Borussia Dortmund Lineup

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Key Battle: Andrew Robertson (Liverpool) vs Christian Pulisic (Borussia Dortmund)

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Talking Points

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Prediction: Liverpool 2-2 Borussia Dortmund

REUTERS/Ed Sykes

21:00 BST, Sunday 22nd July, Bank of America Stadium (Charlotte, NC, USA)

It's the sixth edition of the multi-continental pre-season tournament, and Europe's elite clubs are ramping up their preparations for the upcoming campaign.

Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool have already played four matches this pre-season, while their German opponents have only played once. Dortmund, though, face Manchester City less than 48 hours before their meeting with the Reds.

The ICC tournament has given added meaning to pre-season for Europe's bigger teams, with friendly matches of yesteryear offering little as a spectacle. With a raft of fixtures ahead before the season begins, this trip across the pond will give both sides the ability to rotate players and develop match sharpness.

Last Time Out

Blackburn Rovers 0-2 Liverpool

Liverpool continued their pre-season preparation with a routine win over newly promoted Blackburn Rovers at Ewood Park on Thursday. 

Both sides made wholesale changes for the second half as Klopp blended youth with experience either side of the break. James Milner missed a first-half penalty for the Reds as the Premier League side struggled to dominate.

REUTERS/Ed Sykes

In the second period, Liverpool were much more fluid and gradually controlled the game. The impressive Naby Keita gave his side much needed creativity and spark, linking up frequently with Daniel Sturridge, providing him with Liverpool's second of the game. 

Sturridge was involved in his sides' opener, too, playing in Lazar Markovic who marked his return to the fold with a goal shortly after half-time. 

Manchester City 0-1 Borussia Dortmund

There was a debut for Riyad Mahrez and an appearance for Joe Hart as Manchester City lost 1-0 in their ICC opener to Bundesliga side Borussia Dortmund.

The Black and Yellows fielded a stronger XI and made their strength count against City's youngsters when Mario Gotze fired them ahead from the spot after 28 minutes - Oleksandr Zinchenko had fouled Christian Pulisic.

Mahrez had a free kick tipped over the bar in City's only shot on target in the first half, whilst Hart also made a key save from Mahmoud Dahoud to keep the Citizens in the game, though they never went on to truly threaten.

Liverpool Lineup

The unpredictability of a pre-season friendly makes predicting a line-up virtually impossible. New signing Alisson Becker is unlikely to feature in the USA, while Roberto Firmino, Dejan Lovren, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Jordan Henderson will link back up with the squad after the tour.

Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah and Marko Grujic have returned to training and have travelled, though this first fixture may come too early for their involvement. 

Borussia Dortmund Lineup

Favre and Dortmund also have a large squad, so rotation is likely. Christian Pulisic will return to his native USA, so will hope to play in front of his home fans.

After getting 45 minutes under his belt last time out, Jadon Sancho will also hope to feature, as will the experienced duo of Andre Schurrle and Mario Gotze. 

Key Battle: Andrew Robertson (Liverpool) vs Christian Pulisic (Borussia Dortmund)

Should both players start this one, or at least play a part, then Liverpool's left flank may be a busy area of the pitch.

Pulisic will be eager to return to his native country and will want to impress his home fans. Manager Favre is likely to allow him to play a part in this one, and the youngster will look to keep Robertson on his toes in the left back position. 

Robertson, too, will aim to make his customary runs forward and join Liverpool's attack. To prevent his defenders from being overloaded, Pulisic may need to carry out more defensive duties than he is used to when his team don't have the ball. 

Talking Points

Last chance for Liverpool fringe?

The arrival of Alisson Becker, Fabinho and Xherdan Shaqiri will worry a few of the players that have been on the periphery for a long time at Anfield.

There are several players on the books that manager Klopp and his backroom staff may well be testing for the last time as the building of all-round quality at Anfield builds.

REUTERS/Ed Sykes

Divock Origi has featured heavily so far in pre-season, but having contributed little - and having spent last season out on loan - are his days numbered?

Ragnar Klavan will have cause for concern, as will the likes of Sheyi Ojo and Dominic Solanke, who despite all their promise, may find opportunities limited once again this season.

Both sides to aim high?

Liverpool fans can be very satisfied with the club's dealings in the transfer market so far this summer. In the areas they lacked, the squad has been strengthened.

Whilst we won't perhaps see the extent and potential of a full strength Liverpool team in the USA, these pre-season friendlies will give Klopp and fans the opportunity to mould their desired XI.

REUTERS/John Gress

For Dortmund, the window has been equally busy. The German side has drafted in French centre half Abdou Diallo and Danish midfielder Thomas Delaney from fellow Bundesliga sides Mainz 05 and Werder Bremen, respectively. 

Bayern Munich will continue to be the Bundesliga's powerhouses, though Dortmund will look to use these tests against elite opposition to mount a serious challenge on the Bavarians. 

Prediction: Liverpool 2-2 Borussia Dortmund

Pre-season fixtures are difficult to predict. With so much rotation and an unknown team sheet, shape, style of play and approach all carry a question mark. 

Both sides will experiment with blending youth and experience and both carry a threat going forward. Many sides give priority to their performance over the result in these warm-up fixtures, though the level of opposition will test both camps. 

Football fans in the USA like to see attacking football, and these are two sides capable of giving them what they want. 2-2.