Joel Matip Injury Blow Adds to Liverpool’s Woe
The Cameroon international has suffered a fractured collarbone following an aerial challenge late in Tuesday’s UEFA Champions League win against Napoli.
Liverpoolfc.com have confirmed that early indications show the former Schalke 04 man is likely to be missing for around six weeks. The German-born defender will now undergo surgery.
Matip is an important part of Liverpool’s squad and this is a huge blow to their defensive capabilities, with Joe Gomez also ruled out with a fractured leg. Dejan Lovren returned to the bench for last night’s encounter but is short of match fitness. To top it off, Trent Alexander-Arnold also went off late in the game with a knock.
It will be interesting who The Reds rely on to fill the void alongside Virgil van Dijk. Youngsters Nathaniel Philips and Conor Masterson could well be in line for a call-up to the first-team squad.
The Reds may consider reassessing their January transfer plans. Although, Matip should be back by the end of the transfer window if the diagnosis of six-weeks is correct.
Fixture List Isn’t Kind
In the short-term, Jurgen Klopp will be worried as they negotiate the busy festive period. The League leaders face bitter rivals Manchester United this weekend at Anfield. They then have games against Wolves and Newcastle, before entertaining Arsenal and travelling to Manchester City either side of New year’s day.
The Reds may have to rely on youngsters to get them through the busy festive period and it could be a big dent to their title hopes. They may sit top for now but with some big games coming up, an inexperienced defence is the last thing they needed.