Virgil Van Dijk (Getty Photographs)
Liverpool’s Premier League title defence was rocked on Sunday when the membership confirmed key defender Virgil van Dijk has suffered knee ligament harm amid studies the Dutchman might miss the remainder of the season.
Van Dijk, who would require surgical procedure, hobbled off after a stunning problem from Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford in a 2-2 draw within the Merseyside derby on Saturday.
“The centre-back broken knee ligaments following an incident involving Blues goalkeeper Jordan Pickford after six minutes at Goodison Park,” Liverpool stated in a press release.
“Van Dijk was required to be substituted and additional evaluation on the harm has revealed an operation shall be wanted.
“No particular timescale is being positioned upon his return to motion at this stage.”
It would on the very least be months earlier than Liverpool’s talismanic presence on the again returns from harm, leaving Jurgen Klopp with a significant drawback to resolve to maintain the Reds’ season on observe.
The Netherlands captain can also be prone to lacking the delayed Euro 2020 subsequent June.
“I want you a speedy restoration massive man,” tweeted Liverpool’s high scorer Mohamed Salah.
Van Dijk has been pivotal to Liverpool’s resurgence since making a then world report 75 million ($97 million) transfer for a defender from Southampton in January 2018.
The 29-year-old has began the final 94 league video games to convey a defensive solidity that was missing throughout Klopp’s first two years at Anfield.
Since then Liverpool received the Champions League in 2019 and ended a 30-year wait to win the Premier League earlier this 12 months.
“You have a look at it now and assume can Liverpool win the league with out Van Dijk there?” former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher informed Sky Sports activities.
“Each crew that has aspirations of profitable the league has three or 4 gamers that if a type of gamers is lacking, irrespective of how good your supervisor is, how massive your squad is, you possibly can’t cowl for them. They’re that excellent.”
With the summer time switch window solely simply closed, Klopp should wait till January to bolster his now threadbare choices at centre-back.
Joel Matip and Joe Gomez have constantly struggled with accidents themselves, whereas midfielder Fabinho is an alternative choice having deputised on the coronary heart of the defence already this season.
“I believe they actually have to enter the market in January. Not simply due to Van Dijk’s harm, Liverpool have been weak in that space anyway,” added Carragher.
“For Jurgen Klopp and the membership, instantly it is who can we get in? They should be prepared on January 1 to convey somebody in.”
There are parallels with the intense knee harm that Manchester Metropolis centre-back Aymeric Laporte suffered initially of final season.
With out the Frenchman, Metropolis’s title defence imploded paving the way in which for Liverpool to cruise to the league title by 18 factors.
The sidelining of Van Dijk is compounded by the absence of goalkeeper Alisson Becker with a shoulder harm.
With out the Brazilian in objective, Klopp’s males have conceded 9 occasions of their final two matches, together with a historic 7-2 humiliation at Aston Villa two weeks in the past.
The lack of Van Dijk’s dominant aerial presence was apparent as Everton scored twice from headers to come back from behind in a contentious derby at Goodison Park.
That left the Reds three factors behind their metropolis rivals on the high of the desk.
However they continue to be forward of the remainder of the anticipated title challengers with not one of the Premier League’s ‘massive six’ having fun with an ideal begin to the season.
Van Dijk’s absence can also be a bodyblow to Liverpool’s Champions League aspirations.
Their marketing campaign begins away to Ajax on Wednesday and up to date arrival Thiago Alcantara can also be a significant harm doubt for the journey to Amsterdam.
Klopp was not proud of one other reckless Everton problem that earned Richarlison a straight purple card for taking out the Spanish worldwide.
Thiago was in a position to full the sport, however has additionally been despatched for scans to find the extent of a knee harm.
“Once I left the pitch, Thiago informed me within the purple card state of affairs with Richarlison he thinks he received injured,” stated Klopp.
“We’ll see if it is true or not, but when he felt like this then we’d like to take a look.”