The latest Liverpool news, views and transfer rumours from the Liverpool Echo with latest on Fabinho and Van Dijk replacement.
Liverpool’s Champions League victory over Midtjylland brought a new concern, with Fabinho leaving the field early due to a hamstring problem.
The Brazilian, who has been covering at centre-back in the absence of the injured Virgil van Dijk, was replaced by Rhys Williams during the first half of the 2-0 victory.
With Van Dijk expected to miss most if not all of the season, and fellow centre-back Joel Matip suffering from fitness issues of his own, Fabinho’s condition will be a concern for Liverpool supporters.
And Jurgen Klopp’s update won’t be hugely reassuring for fans as the Reds prepare to face West Ham United at the weekend.
“We have to wait after a scan obviously. You know in these times when someone has a muscle problem and it’s pretty rare the doctor calls me the next morning and says it’s a false alarm, all fine and he can go again,” Klopp said .
“So now it’s only about how long, that’s all. Now a week means three games, 10 days means four, 14 days means seven games and all this kind of things, so that’s how it is.
“Yes, it’s absolutely not cool but that it is the situation.”
Liverpool were made to fight for their win over Midtjylland, with Diogo Jota breaking the deadlock in the 55th minute of the Champions League tie before Mohamed Salah’s late penalty clinched victory.
Klopp had made a number of changes from the side which beat Sheffield United on Saturday, with none of Salah, Sadio Mane or Roberto Firmino starting against the Danish side.
However, the Liverpool manager maintained the changes didn’t represent a lack of respect for the opposition, who he praised for their organisation and discipline.
“If you would watch Liverpool and our situation you’d know it wasn’t a sign of disrespecting Midtjylland,” Klopp said .
“The line-up we chose was to show the respect we have for them because we needed fresh legs desperately. We needed each fresh leg we could get with the five possible substitutions.”
Liverpool have cause for concern at centre-back, with Virgil van Dijk a long-term injury victim and Joel Matip and Fabinho suffering setbacks of their own.
The Reds finished their last game with Joe Gomez and Rhys Williams at the back, but their options beyond those two are limited, and some supporters may now be concerned by the failure to replace Dejan Lovren after the Croatian’s summer move to Zenit St Petersburg.
However, former Liverpool midfielder Adam Lallana is not too concerned.