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Liverpool No2 makes bold Diogo Jota prediction ahead of debut in Carabao Cup


Diogo Jota will “bring solutions” for Liverpool as they bid to defend their Premier League title and repeat their 2019 Champions League triumph.

That’s the prediction from assistant boss Pep Lijnders as new signing Jota prepares to make his Reds debut in Thursday’s Carabao Cup clash against Lincoln City.

Jota will compete with Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah after joining Liverpool from Wolves in a £45m switch.

And while he faces tough competition for a place in the team, Ljinders says the Reds’ four-pronged trophy quest this season will provide ample opportunities for the 23-year-old.

Manager Jurgen Klopp is set to rotate his team for Thursday’s trip to face the Imps, with the likes of Rhys Williams, Neco Williams and Curtis Jones likely to get a chance to impress.

Diogo Jota could make his debut for Liverpool in Thursday’s Carabao Cup clash away to Lincoln City

Jota could turn out in a Reds shirt for the first time as the champions gear up to face a packed schedule, with the visit of Arsenal up next in a Premier League showdown on Monday.

And Ljinders has predicted big things from the Portuguese forward, who earned a move to Anfield after impressing Klopp and his recruitment team with his pressing ability and his versatility.

“You saw our schedule? He will win matches,” Lijnders said of Jota, in quotes reported by the Liverpool Echo.

“He is a player on the level of the front three technically, a pressing monster.

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Liverpool Academy director Alex Inglethorpe (right) talks with first team coach Pepijn Ljinders
Pepijn Ljinders, pictured (left) talking to academy director Alex Inglethorpe, has predicted big things from Jota

Thiago Alcantara blew fans away on his Liverpool debut – but he came close to signing for rivals Arsenal

Liverpool are keen to repeat last season’s success – and you don’t want to miss a thing, surely?

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Liverpool got their title defence off to a shaky start as they edged out a seven-goal thriller against Leeds.

In terms of transfers the Reds have completed the signing of Thiago Alcantara and Wolves’ Diogo Jota has arrived too, in a shock deal worth a potential £45million.

Youngster Ki-Jana Hoever is set to head to Wolves in a £10million deal, while Gini Wijnaldum continues to be linked with Barcelona. There’s a lot to keep track of.

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“The adaptation will hopefully be quite quick, with good players it is normally quite quick. He has to learn our game and the way we want to do things.

“But when we see him play in the national team for Portugal we see them play 4-3-3, there are a lot of similarities between these two teams.

“He will play. He has been bought to create solutions for us.”

Ljinders is believed to have been instrumental in the club’s swoop for Jota, with the forward having been fast-tracked to the top of a list of transfer targets after the Reds No2 received reports of the player’s time at Porto during the 2016/17 season.

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