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Sport Klopp considers Mascherano-type at centre-back amid Liverpool injury crisis

04:20  31 october  2020
04:20  31 october  2020 Source:   goal.com

Liverpool will be vulnerable without their Van Dijk security blanket

  Liverpool will be vulnerable without their Van Dijk security blanket Jurgen Klopp was fidgety and frustrated and in one of those moods when it is hard to get him to engage. The tipping point came when he was asked about Mohamed Salah scoring his 100th Liverpool goal.The tipping point came when he was asked about Mohamed Salah scoring his 100th Liverpool goal, with a quite beautiful finish. The inquisitor’s intention was to get some kind of positivity from Klopp but this was absolutely not the moment.

With Fabinho’s injury , Joe Gomez is the only senior centre - back available right now for Liverpool . Hamann suggests that if not Rhys Williams, Klopp could play Henderson, Milner and Gini as centre - backs in an extreme situation.

"He is a different type but he is a good footballer, quick, physically strong in the air, and they have different options Klopp driven by ‘finding solutions’ for Liverpool ’s injury crisis . Klopp driven by ‘finding solutions’ for Liverpool ’s injury crisis . Jurgen Klopp insisted his team selection was a sign of

Jurgen Klopp said he could use a Javier Mascherano-type solution amid Liverpool's injury crisis in the centre of defence.

a man wearing a uniform: Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp © Andrew Powell/Getty Images Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp

With Virgil van Dijk and Joel Matip sidelined, Liverpool were dealt another blow on Tuesday, when Fabinho – playing at centre-back instead of midfield – hurt his hamstring against Midtjylland in the Champions League.

Joe Gomez is the only senior centre-back available for Saturday's clash at home to West Ham, while Nathaniel Phillips, 23, Billy Koumetio, 17, and Rhys Williams, 19, are also options.

Klopp said he had expected Phillips, who was on loan at Stuttgart last season, to leave the club.

This is Matip's moment: With van Dijk out, he must lead for Liverpool

  This is Matip's moment: With van Dijk out, he must lead for Liverpool IAN HERBERT AND SIMON JONES: Virgil van Dijk's awareness, calmness, height, goals and guidance for Gomez and Joel Matip who are poorer without him, will be sorely missed.It's the spatial awareness, the calmness, the height, the goals and the guidance for Joe Gomez and Joel Matip who are poorer without him, which they will now miss. As well as the diagonal passes which propel Liverpool ahead on the counter attack and were integral to last year's 3-1 away win at Bayern Munich, in which Van Dijk also scored.

Liverpool are facing a crisis at centre - back following injuries to Virgil van Dijk and Fabinho. Liverpool have been tipped to drop Jordan Henderson in at centre - back if required, to combat their defensive crisis . Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp is facing a crisis at centre - back (Image: GETTY).

Liverpool saw talismanic centre - back Virgil van Dijk side-lined with a cruciate ligament injury after a rash tackle from Jordan Pickford in the Merseyside Klopp confirmed Fabinho will undergo a scan on the issue after the Champions League clash, but didn' t sound optimistic about his chances of being fit

The Liverpool manager also said it was possible he could use Jordan Henderson, Georginio Wijnaldum, James Milner or Andy Robertson at centre-back, in a similar way to what Mascherano – initially a defensive midfielder – did during his career.


Video: Blood Red: Jurgen Klopp thinks 'Fabinho likes playing centre-back' (Liverpool Echo)

"I know Nat [Phillips] the longest so I was really happy with this development. Since I know him he made big, big steps and is an exceptional character," Klopp told reporters.

"I said it before that the little problem was that we were all convinced, how it looked all the time… there were a lot of clubs interested in him and in the end, maybe because of the coronavirus crisis, nobody had the money to do it but we expected him to leave the club, to be honest. Thank God he didn't, but that's the reason why he is not in the Champions League squad, the only reason.

"He cannot be on the bench in the Champions League but he is available for the Premier League like all three are and now I have to make a decision.

"And we have still, obviously, other options like Hendo or Gini or James – or Robbo can play centre-half as well. They are all not smaller than Mascherano, for example, and he played pretty well in that position.

"So yes, we have obviously still one or two options and one of them, we will choose. Which one, you have to switch on the television tomorrow night."

Liverpool have collected 13 points from their opening six Premier League games of the season to sit second in the table.

'The most difficult game in the world of football' - Klopp braces Liverpool for Man City test .
Liverpool's defence has been typically picked apart on trips to Manchester City, and Jurgen Klopp is wary of the threat they face on Sunday.Reigning champions Liverpool have made a bright start to the current campaign, albeit with a major blip in their 7-2 loss at Aston Villa, while City are gradually picking up form.

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