John Aldridge on the six Liverpool players who need to play against Carlisle - including Sturridge and Firmino

Daniel Sturridge

Liverpool are expected to make several changes for this week's League Cup tie against Carlisle United.

Former Liverpool striker John Aldridge has suggested that six players in particular need to start the game against Carlisle United in the League Cup on Wednesday night.

There may be the temptation to play the strongest available XI from Brendan Rodgers in order to get the side back to winning ways, having been without of a success in six games, but the chances are that the Liverpool boss will ring the changes in order to keep some players fresh for the weekend's Premier League clash with Aston Villa at Anfield - which is now taking on huge significance at this stage of the season.

Aldridge wrote in the Liverpool Echo: "Daniel Sturridge looked understandably rusty on his long awaited return to first team football on Sunday.

"Which is why I would give him another hour’s football on Wednesday night against Carlisle.

"Obviously the priority is to make progress in the Cup, but there are also a number of players who need a game in midweek.

"Adam Bogdan, needs a game, Adam Lallana, Divock Origi, while Roberto Firmino could do with a game and a goal.

"Dejan Lovren also needs to try and repair his confidence in a match. But I would definitely give Daniel Sturridge another chance to shake off some of the ring rust he has gathered."

It was encouraging for Liverpool to see Sturridge back in the starting line-up at the weekend after the a long period of time on the sidelines with a hip injury, and it is clear that the club will want to build up his fitness in order for him to get back to his best sooner rather than later.

Adam Lallana is another player that is still regaining fitness. He played 90 minutes in the Europa League against Bordeaux and scored - and featured in the last half an hour against Norwich - while Firmino has yet to show his best form since his big-money arrival from Hoffenheim, but has shown flashes of quality. The Brazilian hasn't completed 90 minutes so far and one feels this could be the ideal fixture for him to get some game time under his belt.

Then there is Origi, who looked increasingly isolated during the draw in Bordeaux on Thursday and has only played around 80 minutes for the Reds so far. Despite being left out of the squad altogether against Norwich, it is hard to think that he won't get the opportunity to shine against Carlisle, while Adam Bogdan has yet to make an appearance since signing from Bolton Wanderers. Dejan Lovren's recent omission from the starting XI in favour of Mamadou Sakho will provide him with an opportunity to get a decent workout, so that he can try and turn his fortunes around.

It would be something of a surprise if the Reds didn't make a series of changes for this game. Regardless of their form, and the team they put out, they are widely expected to progress.

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