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Should we play Merino ahead of Shelvey this weekend?

Should we play Merino ahead of Shelvey this weekend?

It looks as though Jonjo is a major doubt for Liverpool this weekend and that`s certainly something playing on my mind.

Games between us and them have never been what you`d call cagey affairs and so to have one of our main midfielders more than likely out of contention is hardly an ideal build-up.

Anyway, it is what it is and I`m sure Rafa will have a plan in mind but whilst we wait to see who he brings into midfield, I`d suggest he seriously considers Mikel Merino.

I didn`t really know what to expect of the young Spaniard when he arrived - out of hope I was thinking he might be one of Benitez`s shrewder signings - and the early signs were good.

He sprayed passes for fun and helped control the tempo of games with his wand of a left foot before getting crocked and, since then, he`s looked off the pace.

However, I think in recent weeks he`ll have benefitted from being back in training and not playing as many games, so now I reckon it`s time for him to be back in the starting line-up.

With Jonjo out we need a player that`s going to be confident on the ball and not shy away - especially when Liverpool will have most of the ball.

Mo Diame will probably start but he`s there for energy and running - not for getting on the ball and creating.

In my eyes, the most similar player to Shelvey in the midfield is Merino and if we`re brave and give him the ball regularly it might pay off.

Rafa might just look to shut up shop but this game is essentially a free swing and so why not get Merino back up to speed?

Would you start Merino? Let me know in the poll!

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Writer:Looney Toon
Date:Wednesday February 28 2018
Time: 3:36PM

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