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Combined XI: Liverpool v Arsenal (Current)

Ahead of this weekend's pivotal meeting between Liverpool and Arsenal, we have constructed a combined XI featuring players from both sides.

England Premier League

With Mikel Arteta's Arsenal leading Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool by just one point at the summit of the Premier League, this weekend's clash at Anfield takes on utmost importance.

The last fixture before Christmas, both teams will go into this match knowing a victory would see them top the table on Christmas Day, with over half of Premier League champions (51.6%) having led the way on this date.

As two of the top sides in the country, Liverpool and Arsenal both boast squads littered with quality, making the task of putting together a combined XI a challenging one.

This is the selection we have plumped for, lining up in a 4-3-3 formation:

GK: Alisson

Boasting the best save percentage in the Premier League so far this season on 80.7%, Liverpool's Alisson Becker has firmly cemented his reputation as one of the outstanding goalkeepers in Europe since arriving at Anfield from Roma in 2018.

Brazil's number one is relied upon heavily by Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool given their ultra-attacking style of play and aggressive high line, with the 31-year-old expected to act as a sweeper keeper and be sharp off his line and adept in one-on-one situations.

Alisson is not only a terrific shot-stopper with impressive athleticism, but he also exudes an aura which appears to inspire confidence in his defenders in front of him. 
 

RB: Trent Alexander-Arnold

Although having spent an increasing amount of time in midfield areas so far this season, Liverpool's local boy Trent Alexander-Arnold remains a right-back first and foremost.

After enduring a difficult individual campaign last term, Alexander-Arnold has looked better than ever so far this season, with four Premier League goal involvements to date.

As a full-back with unparalleled technical ability and vision, Alexander-Arnold is one of Liverpool's most integral creative assets, and is increasingly the player the Reds look to in order to unlock opposition defences.
 

CB: William Saliba

After enjoying a sensational debut season in the Premier League last term following three separate loan spells in his homeland in France, William Saliba has picked up from where he left off so far in this campaign.

Impressively playing every minute of Arsenal's 17 Premier League matches to date, Saliba has grown into the defensive bedrock of Mikel Arteta's ever-improving side, with the Gunners' goals against total of 15 the joint-lowest in the division alongside their opponents this weekend.

An imposing physical presence, Saliba is also extremely proficient on the ball which helps Arsenal build up from the back and dominate possession.
 

CB: Virgil van Dijk

Alongside Arsenal's Saliba at centre-back goes Liverpool's very own defensive juggernaut - Dutchman Virgil van Dijk.

Growing into one of the top centre-backs in Europe since signing from Southampton for a record-breaking fee for a defender of £75m in 2018, Van Dijk is now the Reds' skipper following the departure of Jordan Henderson to the Saudi Pro League in the summer.

Although arguably having declined somewhat following an ACL injury suffered in 2020, Van Dijk remains a dominant figure at the back for Liverpool with an all-round skillset which sets him apart from his defensive counterparts in the Premier League and across Europe.
 

LB: Andy Robertson

Currently sidelined for Liverpool due to a shoulder injury picked up on international duty for Scotland, Andy Robertson has been a terrific servant for the Reds since being acquired from Hull City for a bargain fee of around £8m in 2017.

Robertson's assists total of 57 is the most of all defenders in Premier League history, with teammate Alexander-Arnold hot on his tail on 56, the left-back is a tremendous athlete with a brilliant delivery in the final third.

Liverpool have missed the Scotman's thrust and tenacity down their left flank in his injury absence, with Greek international Kostas Tsimikas deputising, and Jurgen Klopp will hope to have the ex-Hull City man back in the fold early on in the new year.
 

CM: Declan Rice

Signed for a club-record £105m fee from West Ham in the summer, England midfielder Declan Rice looks to have been worth every penny in Arsenal colours so far this season.

Offering the Gunners' backline solid defensive protection, the all-action Rice is also capable of dictating the tempo of matches and driving forward with the ball, scoring three crucial late goals against Man Utd, Chelsea and Luton in the Premier League to date.

Should Arsenal seal their first league title win since the Invincibles team of 2003/04, expect Rice to be at the heart of their success.
 

CM: Dominik Szoboszlai

Arguably the poster boy of 'Liverpool 2.0' - the new-look Reds side shaped by manager Klopp - Hungarian midfielder Dominik Szoboszlai has looked the part since signing from RB Leipzig for £60m in the summer.

Very much in the Klopp mould with regards to his athleticism and propensity for pressing, Szoboszlai also boasts impressive technical quality, with seven goal contributions in all competitions so far this season.

A star in his home country as skipper of a Hungarian national team preparing to participate in next summer's Euros in Germany, 23-year-old Szoboszlai has all the tools to develop into one of the best midfielders in the Premier League under the tutelage of Klopp. 
 

CM: Martin Odegaard

Recording an exceptional 23 goal involvements in the Premier League last season - 15 goals and eight assists - Arsenal skipper Martin Odegaard announced himself as one of the standout midfielders in the country.

The ex-Real Madrid youngster acts as the advanced playmaker in Arsenal's well-oiled machine under Mikel Arteta, with the Norwegian one of the key difference makers in the final third for the Gunners.

At 25 years old, there is still plenty room for growth for the tremendously technically gifted Odegaard, who is bidding to become the first Arsenal captain since Patrick Vieira in 2004 to lift the Premier League title.
 

RW: Bukayo Saka

Given the impact he has made in Arsenal's first team since breaking through in the 2019/20 season, it can be easy to forget that Bukayo Saka remains only 22 years old.

Now a crucial figure for both club and country, Saka is one of the most exciting players to watch in the Premier League, having registered eight goals and 12 assists in all competitions so far in this campaign.

Saka is a winger with both the physical attributes to cause teams problems in transition and the football brain to unlock even the most compact of defences.
 

ST: Mohamed Salah

Shoehorned into this team through the middle in order to incorporate Arsenal's sensational Saka, Liverpool's Mohamed Salah is one of the Premier League's bonafide world stars.

Winning three Premier League Golden Boots since transferring to Anfield from Roma for around £36.9m in 2017, the 'Egyptian King' Salah has been at the forefront of Liverpool's resurgence at the top of English football under Jurgen Klopp.

On 11 goals and seven assists so far this term in the Premier League, Salah will have his eyes firmly set on a second league winners' medal as a Liverpool player this season.
 

LW: Gabriel Martinelli

Enjoying an extremely productive campaign in front of goal last term as Arsenal pushed Manchester City hard in the title race - recording 20 goal contributions in the Premier League - Brazilian winger Gabriel Martinelli has made a comparatively slow start to this season.

With just two goals and two assists in the top flight so far, the 22-year-old has yet to get really get going in this campaign, with the Gunners as a whole arguably less swashbuckling and ruthless in the final third as they were last season.

Should the lightning quick and clinical Martinelli find his groove Arsenal's title charge could just go up a notch, with the South American one of the most difficult wingers in the country to contain when at the top of his game.
 

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