Date: 8th November 2019 at 8:30pm
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Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain must start for Liverpool against Manchester City on Sunday, according to Darren Bent. 

The midfielder has been in fine form since returning from injury, and hit a crucial winner in the Reds’ midweek victory over Genk.

And Sky Sports pundit Bent believes he deserves his chance against the defending champions.

Speaking to Football Insider, he said: “He’s been sensational since he came back, he’s been brilliant and he’s forcing Klopp’s hand to play him because arguably he’s been one of their best players.

“For Liverpool, that’s a real positive, for the championship, you want your best players ready to play games.

“I think he’ll go Fabinho, Henderson and Ox, or you go Fabinho, Wijnaldum and the Ox. Either way, it’s Fabinho, the Ox and then whichever one you want to put in there, feel free.”

OPINION

It’s hard to argue with Bent on this one. The Ox has been in superb form recently, and he adds a new dimension in the centre of the park for the Reds. Against Genk in midweek he pretty much ran the show, and his match rating of 8.12, combined with three shots, three successful dribbles, and a key pass, as per Whoscored, illustrated a player who offers a real threat going forward. That could be key against City, and the battle to take control of the midfield may well be where this game is won or lost. Having a player in there who can turn defence into attack quickly, and who can pick an incisive pass if needed could prove to be a real advantage, but whether or not Jurgen Klopp sees fit to sacrifice either Jordan Henderson or Gini Wijnaldum to facilitate that remains to be seen.