Liverpool v Borussia Dortmund Preview: Reds face Germans in first match of US tour
Dejan Lovren scored a dramatic late winner in an epic Europa League quarter final in 2016 in the sides last competitive meeting (Getty Images: picture alliance)

Liverpool kick off the first leg of their US pre-season tour tomorrow against Bundesliga outfit Borussia Dortmund at the Notre Dame Stadium in Indiana.

The friendly, which kicks off at 1am BST on Saturday, will see the German once again come to face with a team that is very close to his heart. 

Klopp won back to back Bundesliga titles in 2011 and 2012, and also reached a Champions League final the following year in 2013 where they lost to domestic rivals Bayern Munich.

Liverpool will then play two further matches during their time in the States, against Sevilla at Fenway Park in Boston on Sunday night, then finally against Sporting Lisbon at the Yankee Stadium in New York next Thursday.

A huge step up in quality

Liverpool have won both of their pre-season friendlies this summer, after following up a 6-0 hammering of League One side and Merseyside neighbours Tranmere Rovers with a 3-1 win at League Two side Bradford City last weekend in a game that raised over £30,000 for motor neurone disease. 

But tomorrow's match will see the Reds come up against a Dortmund side that, like themselves missed out on a league title last season, by just two points, with Bayern pipping them to the crown.

The German side have already played one fixture as part of their trip to the US, beating Seattle Sounders 3-1 with goals from Marius Wolf, Paco Alcacer and Jadon Sancho.

Manager Lucien Favre has been busy improving his squad for the coming season, and some big names are expected to feature against Liverpool.

Who to watch out for

Dortmund captured one of Europe's most exciting prospects earlier this summer with the signing of winger Julien Brandt from domestic rivals Bayer Leverkusen for a fee of around €25m. The 23-year-old joins Die Borussen after an excellent final season with his former club saw him score eight goals and rack up 11 assists to help Leverkusen secure a Champions League spot. 

Brandt, who has been capped 25 times by Germany, was previously targeted by Liverpool manager Klopp in 2017, so Liverpool will be fully aware of the skill and ability he possesses, should he feature in tomorrow's encounter.

The Signal Iduna Park faithful were further delighted this summer with the news that 2014 World Cup winner Mats Hummels would be returning to the club after three years with Bayern Munich, The 30-year old was part of Klopp's side that won consecutive Bundesliga titles and the defender's composure and quality on the ball will be a welcome sight to Dortmund fans in the coming season.

Another man to watch out for is Thorgan Hazard, brother of Real Madrid forward Eden, has also been signed by Favre this season. Hazard joins the club from Borussia Monchengladbach where he established himself as one of the league's best attacking midfielders.

With so many key players yet to return from their extended holidays due to international commitments, the Liverpool squad that has travelled to the US is looking rather thin.

But one man to keep an eye on is 19-year-old striker Rhian Brewster. With Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah yet to join up with the squad, this US tour is a real chance for the youngster to really stake his claim.

With only one senior striker in Divock Origi currently available to him, Klopp is prepared to give his hot prospects an opportunity to showcase their potential, and Brewster has certainly made an impression already, after scoring a brace in the 6-0 demolition of Tranmere.

Daniel Sturridge's departure at the end of last season has opened up a striking berth amongst Liverpool's attacking options, and if Brewster can add to his tally in pre-season he may find himself involved in the first team in the coming campaign in which European champions Liverpool will be competing for honours on multiple fronts.

Another player who Reds fans are eager to see on the US tour is Adam Lallana. The former Southampton player has been severely hampered by injuries over the past two years, which have stopped him from regaining the form that he showed in the 2016/17 season. 

What is interesting is that manager Klopp has hinted that he is planning to use Lallana in a new role this season, playing him as a deep-lying playmaker or as a 6. 

Despite his struggles with injury and form, Lallana's ball control and vision should help him to adapt to a new position in the Liverpool midfield, and the US tour will give him the chance to prove to Kopites that he can still be a valuable player in the German's squad.

What the managers have said

Speaking to the club's official website, Liverpool boss Klopp is relishing the prospect of going up against a team where he will forever be idolised, but is also realistic about his side's chances, given the number of players he is still missing.

He said: "I'm excited about having the first proper test. It will probably be a rather young team will face a very good team; let's guess Borussia Dortmund change the 60-30 rhythm for the players, then pretty much all the big guns will start tomorrow. And that will be a tough game."

Dortmund manager Lucien Favre also spoke of his excitement about coming up against Champions League winners Liverpool.

Speaking to sportingnews.com, he added: "We are very happy to play against Liverpool, we are looking forward to this match. We played against them a year ago, and now we are going to play them again.

"The difference this year is that they just won the Champions League, which makes things a little more special."

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