Despite lifting their first-ever Premier League trophy last season, Liverpool have experienced an uneven campaign defending their title – their star forwards going through a scoreless rough patch and the myriad of injuries sustained not helping the situation.
They did, however, manage to clinch a third-placed finish, even without star players like Virgil van Dijk – so when are they expected to return? Goal takes a look.
Virgil van Dijk is was ruled out for the season, after picking up a serious ACL injury in the Merseyside derby against Everton in October.
The Netherlands centre-back underwent successful surgery in London, with Klopp admitting that it would have taken a “miracle” for him to feature again this season.
Van Dijk voluntarily pulled out of involvement with the Netherlands at Euro 2020 in order to prioritise his rehabilitation process, maximising his chances to begin the new domestic club season in full fitness.
But despite being involved in pre-season training, Van Dijk was left out of the squad by Klopp for Liverpool’s first two friendlies – casting doubt that he will be fully fit in time for the Premier League opener against Norwich.
Klopp also refused to take any risks with co-defender Joe Gomez, who has also been sidelined with injury for a substantial amount of time.
When asked if Van Dijk and Gomez will return to the team soon: “It would still be a surprise, unfortunately,” Klopp said.
“But they look really good. Look, I think, they do everything, they play football, we keep them in training, we do the things we can do, they don’t too much and stuff like this.
“We just have to be patient – we prepare for a full season, not for a pre-season game. I will not risk it for a game here, so we have to see.
“We have a lot of games still coming, pre-season games, but I don’t see them being involved for the next one.”
The likes of Jordan Henderson, James Milner and Joel Matip all picked up injuries during the second half of the season, but should all be fit in time for the new Premier League campaign – with Henderson even playing an important role in the England team as they finished runners-up in Euro 2020, scoring against the Ukraine in the quarter-final.
Goal will keep this page updated for the latest injury news and updates.
|Player||Injury||Expected return date|
|Virgil van Dijk||Knee||New season|
|Joe Gomez||Knee||New season|