Liverpool's best starting XI to play Southampton

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Liverpool kick off their Premier League campaign against Southampton in nine days time and here is a look at the side Brendan Rogers should start with at Anfield.

Goalkeeper - Simon Mignolet

Mignolet had a somewhat uneasy campaign last season at Anfield, after moving from Sunderland for £8m. He immediately became first choice in goal, taking Pepe Reina's throne. He put in some superb performances for the Reds, making crucial saves, however produced some glaring errors. The Belgian International should be much more settled this season and put last season behind him and show the potential everyone knows he possesses.

Right-Back - Jon Flanagan

Flanagan emerged into the Liverpool starting line-up last season and became an immediate hit in the side. His performance in the 3-3 draw away at Merseyside rivals Everton was highly praised by everyone and ended up making 23 appearances last season. He featured at his unpreffered position of left-back, filling in for the injured Jose Enrique, however he never looked to struggle playing on his weaker side. Flanagan's efforts should be rewarded by him playing on playing his preferable right hand side.

Centre-Back - Martin Skrtel

Skrtel was inspirational in many Liverpool games last season, making crucial tackles and clearances. He was the only centre-half to play regularly in Brendan Rogers' starting XI and has to accustom himself playing with several central defenders. Skrtel is a player who gives his whole heart to games and reads the game well and will likely lead the back four again this season, starting with Southampton.

Centre-Back - Dejan Lovren

Lovren arrives at Anfield fresh off the back of a £20m move from the team he may well feature against in Liverpool's first game. The Croatian was inspirational in The Saints' eighth place finish, making more tackles, clearances and aerial duels won than Manchester City's Vincent Kompany. He has a big price-tag to live up to, however Lovren looks like he could do just that.

Left-Back - Jose Enrique

The 2013/2014 campaign was extremly frustrating for the Spaniard, who was injury riddled for most of the season. However, he's back to full fitness and looks to be back in Brendan Roger's plans. Enrique is attacking minded and his determination to go past opposing defenders always wows fans, however he also has superb defences duties with the strength of an ox to win the ball back.

Defensive Midfield - Steven Gerrard

Gerrard has been the heartbeat of the Liverpool side for over ten years now, and he doesn't look like he's retiring anytime soon. Retiring from internation duty signifies that the 34-year-old wants to be kept fresh so he can play for Liverpool as much as possible this season. He took to his new adopted position like a duck-to-water last campaign, breaking up attacks and playing world class balls up top. The academy graduate will continue to inspire his team-mates as Gerrard searches to lift the only major trophy in football he is yet to win - the Premier League.

Centre Midfield - Emre Can

Can signed this summer for £10m and despite being just 20, is ability looks well beyond that. Rogers has clearly realised that a replacement for Gerrard playing his box-to-box role was neeed and Can can do exactly that. He's been ultra-impressive during pre-season, making solid defensive tackled and driving at the opposition's back four.

Attacking Midfield - Phillipe Coutinho

Coutinho, since moving from Inter Milan for £8.5m, has instantly become a fan-favourite. He makes football look so easy the way he glides past defenders and cuts through back fours with inch-perfect balls. His seven assists last season highlight his ability and it is likely he will top that, starting against Southampton.

Left Wing - Lazar Markovic

Markovic joins the Reds after moving from Benfica for a price-tag of £20m. He looks to have everything you need to play under Brendan Rogers - pace, power, speed, flair but most importantly a threat towards goal. Markovic has been one of the most highly tipped youngsters in European football and aided Benfica to the Portugese title and Europa League final, scoring five goals. His pre-season efforts have shown what the ability he possesses and the Serbian will only get better as he settles more.

Right Wing - Raheem Sterling

Nobody could argue that Sterling does not deserve to be a regular in the Liverpool starting XI. The youngster had a jaw-dropping campaign last season, unleashing his true potential he previously showed. Sterling was one of England's stand-out players at the World Cup and continued that form into Liverpool's pre-season campign, scoring two goals and creating a penalty against Manchester United. As Sterling plays more, he will only continue to grow into a world class player.

Forward - Daniel Sturridge

21 goals last season and still he wasn't Liverpool's best player. Losing Luis Suarez will be a loss to Sturridge's game as they formed the formiddable 'SAS' partnership, however the former Chelsea man can step up to be Liverpool's number on target man this season. He carried Liverpool early last season when Luis Suarez was unavailable through suspension and will depict that he is good enough to do so again.

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Luis Suarez
Daniel Sturridge
Premier League
Steven Gerrard

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