John Aldridge calls for Liverpool to show greater fight against Stoke City

Aldridge feels Liverpool need to respond after a dispiriting defeat to West Ham United at the weekend.

Former Liverpool striker John Aldridge has said if the Reds don't show greater fight in their League Cup tie against Stoke City tonight than they did in their defeat to West Ham United then the result will go against them. 

The Reds are looking to position themselves well for the second leg of their semi-final as they bid to reach the final of the competition for the first time since their last trophy win in 2012.

In his Liverpool Echo column, Aldridge wrote: "It will be a really tough game and Jurgen Klopp has to field his strongest team in the first leg of the Capital One Cup semi-final.

"Stoke have great quality from wide areas and we need to stop those crosses getting into the box. With the likes of Arnautovic, Shaqiri and Bojan they are a real threat.

"We dug in to win 1-0 there in the league on the opening weekend of the season and we need to do the same again.

"We need to be disciplined and organised. We need to scrap. A draw would be a good result to take back to Anfield."

A draw would certainly keep the tie nicely poised and with Liverpool's struggles in front of goal of late, the last thing they need is to be trailing going into the second leg at Anfield three weeks later.

As for team selection, Klopp hasn't exactly got much choice in terms of his team selection as he has an injury list longer than his arm, with only one available striker at his disposal, his captain sidelined and a back line that picks itself. There isn't that much room for manoeuvre.

The Stoke side Liverpool will face is going to one hungry for silverware, both from the players and the manager. The Potters have improved greatly since their opening day defeat to Liverpool while there have been many changes taking place at the Reds - so they dynamics of the game are very different.

It will be interesting to see what Liverpool's approach to the game will be. Will they try and control things or be content to let the home side have the ball? If they can somehow sneak a win, then they will be in command ahead of the return leg.

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