Liverpool have gone out and done it again. They were incredibly close to landing one of the best players in the world, Nabil Fekir and pulled the plug on the 25-year-old coming to Anfield reportedly because of a dodgy knee.
Cue hundreds of thousands of Liverpool fans absolutely going mental on social media and having a good old go at the management, Jurgen Klopp, Michael Edwards, John Henry, Sergio Ramos and Michael Owen.
All right, the last two players weren’t abused because Fekir was not coming but Ramos and Owen aren’t any saints for the stuff they have pulled off on us.
Yes, Fekir could have been the next Philippe Coutinho. Yes, Fekir could have been the link to our front three. Yes, Fekir could have turned out to become a world-beater and could have made us more deadly.
On the flip side, Liverpool do know what they are doing when it comes to medicals and players. At least, they should know by now.
Injuries burn Liverpool a lot
Fekir’s injury a few years ago was an ACL tear that ruled him out for the season at Lyon. For those not in the know, it is incredibly difficult to get back to playing in the best way after an ACL tear.
We all remember how Lucas Leiva was ruling the roost and was probably the best midfielder in the Premier League at one point before suffering an ACL injury and missed 34 games for the Reds.
In fact, after that injury in 2011-12, Lucas picked up seven more injuries and missed an additional 44 games across five seasons.
Even legendary players such as Ronaldo could not get back to being the best after picking up serious injuries while playing for Inter Milan. So maybe, Liverpool were trying to play it safe and not sign a player for £53m only to see him sit on the sidelines.
ACLs can be tricky to diagnose and understand and we should be trusting the LFC medical team after their history of dealing with injuries to already signed players.
One player that epitomises our bad luck with injuries has to be Daniel Sturridge. The English striker spent half of last season on loan at West Brom and as soon as he made his debut, he picked up an injury.
In fact, Sturridge has had a multitude of injuries since moving to Liverpool and has missed 99 games for the Reds in 567 days across five seasons.
That is almost two complete seasons out with injury!
We have also had the likes of Alberto Aquilani, the big replacement for Xabi Alonso, but the Italian was never able to create a name for himself at Anfield and was out for 214 days and 22 games with an injury.
Turning the clock back a few more years, we had one of the most talented left-backs in Fabio Aurelio who missed 29 games in three years while Philipp Degen was probably made of glass as he picked up way too many injuries.
Daniel Agger was another top talent that had his issues with injuries as the Dane missed a mammoth 111 games for the Reds in over eight years.
Liverpool have had their fair share of injury-ridden players and if they are willing to not take a risk with a player that could have another major injury, why should we go all ballistic on them?
Of course, injuries are based on luck too. It could so well happen that Fekir stays fit for the rest of his career and becomes one of the greatest players to have ever played the game, however, avoiding risky signings, especially when it comes to injuries, is important for us as we look to build a young team that can stay together for years and challenge for titles.
Fabinho and Keita aren’t even 25, while our attack’s oldest player is Sadio Mane, who is 26. These are the building blocks for a great future and our transfer history under Klopp has been good too, apart from a couple of dodgy signings that have yet to bear fruit.
We should trust our German manager and the scouting team as the likes of Mane, Salah, Robertson and even Georginio Wijnaldum have done pretty well, while Roberto Firmino has become one of the best forwards in England.
If we aren’t getting Fekir, there must a proper reason for it and we should just stay calm and look ahead to the transfer window as we are now capable of getting any player we want.
Liverpool injury update: Jurgen Klopp provides the latest on injured Reds stars including Keita
Manager Jurgen Klopp has provided the latest team news ahead of Liverpool’s clash with Huddersfield Town. (Liverpool Echo)
Summer signing Naby Keita suffered a hamstring injury while on duty for his national team whereas Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Virgil Van Dijk suffered setbacks too.
The Reds will check on the fitness of the latter three but Klopp confirmed that Keita is out for this game. When asked if he had a fitness update, Klopp responded by saying (h/t Liverpool Echo),
“Not really. We had a session yesterday and a few of the boys trained, so we’ll have to see how they’ve reacted after that.
“The only thing that is pretty sure is that Naby will not be available; with all the rest we have to see how it develops. That’s it, pretty much.”
Speaking about Virgil van Dijk, the gaffer added that there were no long-term concerns regarding the player’s fitness. The Dutchman featured in the Netherlands’ 3-0 win vs Germany but returned home after the game as a precautionary measure, missing the following game against Belgium.
“You saw when he went off – everybody saw when he went off – in the home game against Southampton, Virg would not leave the pitch without any major problems.
“It settled pretty quickly. Football players have to play very often with some kind of pain, that’s how it is. What it is exactly is not too important.
“It’s all good, he has no problems with that anymore.”
We’ll have to wait to see if the injured players recover in time to make it to the starting XI against Huddersfield Town.
Despite a drop in form, we are level on points with league leaders Man City and a win against the Terriers would help us maintain the pressure at the top.
Salah and Mane out? – Predicted 4-3-3 Liverpool line-up to face Huddersfield Town
Predicted Liverpool line-up to face Huddersfield in the Premier League
Liverpool take on a struggling Huddersfield Town in the Premier League on Saturday. While the Terriers are one of the three teams who are yet to win in the Premier League this season, Liverpool are tied level on points with league leaders, Manchester City.
The Reds are unbeaten in the league but the international break hasn’t been great. Mohamed Salah, Virgil van Dijk, Naby Keita and Sadio Mane all picked up injuries and Jurgen Klopp might mix things up.
Liverpool drew against Manchester City last time around and it will be interesting to see how the Reds fare in this game.
Probable Liverpool XI
Manager: Jurgen Klopp
The Brazilian is our first-choice goalkeeper and will start the game against the Terriers on Saturday.
Trent Alexander-Arnold (RB)
Alexander-Arnold was part of the England side during the recent international break and should be up for the clash against Huddersfield.
Virgil van Dijk (CB)
Van Dijk is a sure starter for the Reds at the back. He has completely transformed our team’s dynamics and is crucial to our success.
Joe Gomez (CB)
Gomez was excellent for England against Spain and should look to carry that form for Liverpool on Saturday.
Andy Robertson (LB)
The Scottish captain is one of the best left-backs in the league and must start for the Reds.
James Milner (CM)
Milner picked up an injury prior to the international break but should be fit for this game.
Jordan Henderson (CM)
The captain should start the game for the Reds given that Naby Keita is out injured.
Georginio Wijnaldum (CM)
Wijnaldum scored a great goal against Germany recently and has been excellent for Liverpool so far.
Xherdan Shaqiri (RW)
Salah’s minor problem could give Shaqiri a chance to shine. The Swiss star hasn’t started many games for us, but this is the perfect tie to play him.
Roberto Firmino (ST)
The Brazilian isn’t getting as many goals as he would have liked, but he is an important player for the team and should start on Saturday.
Daniel Sturridge (LW)
With Mane a doubt, Klopp can opt to play Daniel Sturridge on the left wing.
Reputed journalist claims Liverpool attacker will leave in January – £20m price tag set
James Pearce of the Liverpool Echo reports that Divock Origi could leave Anfield in the winter window. The Belgian was linked with a move away in the summer but remained at the club.
Wolverhampton Wanderers could make a move for the Belgian striker. The club were willing to spend £22million plus add-ons in the summer but Origi wasn’t willing to move to Molineux, as per the report.
— James Pearce (@JamesPearceEcho) October 18, 2018
The report adds that Everton are also interested in the 23-year-old but they have not made any official contact with Liverpool.
Borussia Dortmund were also interested in the striker (h/t Liverpool Echo) but wanted to sign him on a loan in the summer.
Origi is not getting a lot of game time this season as Roberto Firmino and Daniel Sturridge are being preferred by Jurgen Klopp.
The Belgian needs to move out and truth be told, he hasn’t been the same since a horrible tackle by Ramiro Funes Mori in a Merseyside derby in Klopp’s first season in charge.
Origi could fetch us some decent money and hopefully, he gets the right move away from the club to reignite his career elsewhere.
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