Liverpool is coming off back-to-back wins against Premier League rivals Manchester United and Manchester City during their ICC trip to the United States. This game is not part of the International Champions Cup, but is equally important as Napoli will certainly put Jurgen Klopp’s side to the test.
Liverpool vs Napoli preview
The Reds have benefited from Mohamed Salah’s and Sadio Mane’s early World Cup exits, as both players have featured heavily in the pre-season. As a result, unlike their Premier League adversaries, Klopp’s men have looked to be in season form, flying on the field and creating chances at will. The two are set to start alongside the planet’s most expensive keeper Alisson Becker. Liverpool’s manager has already confirmed the €72.5 million signing is ready to make his debut following a full week of practice with the club.
The fans in Dublin will have the privilege to see one of the most exciting teams in Europe on Saturday at 19:00 CET. Naby Keita sat out of Liverpool’s final two matches of the American tour with a neck problem and he shouldn’t dress up for this one either. 18-year-old Portuguese right-back Rafael Camacho has received an extended look this pre-season because of the absence of Trent Alexander-Arnold, who’s still on vacation. He could be in line for another start, as Nathan Clyne may not be fit enough to play after taking a leave of absence to witness the birth of his son. Shaqiri was sensational since coming on in the second half against Manchester United. He could also be in line for heavy minutes.
Napoli is three out of three in their pre-season friendlies, defeating Gozzano (4-0), Carpi (5-1) and Chievo (2-0). They are led by new head coach Carlo Ancelotti, who took over the team after the row between Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis and former coach, Maurizio Sarri. The Italian manager has brought a few new players to refresh Napoli’s title-contending squad. Fabian Ruiz was signed to replace the departed Jorginho, whereas Simone Verdi, who scored in the last friendly versus Chievo, should provide additional wing depth. Alex Meret and Orestis Karnezis will battle for the role of starting goalkeeper after regular No.1 Pepe Reina signed with AC Milan.
Next on the schedule for Liverpool and Napoli
Liverpool has one more fixture on the schedule on Tuesday against Torino, before taking on West Ham United to open the Premier League, a season in which they will try to challenge Manchester City for the title.
Napoli has similar aspirations. Their Serie A season kicks off at Stadio Olimpico against Lazio, the first of several tough matches to begin the season. Lazio will be followed by Milan, Sampdoria, Fiorentina, Torino, Parma and Juventus. Before that, though, Borussia Dortmund and Wolfsburg await in two more friendlies to be played on August 7 and 11.