Later News Oct 18

Bad news, Liverpool - Virgil Van Dijk could be out for the rest of the season


Liverpool’s chances of retaining their English Premier League title may have suffered a fatal blow during their Merseyside derby draw against Everton last night (SGT).

 

And that’s not because VAR denied them a win when it overturned a last-gasp goal by Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson when Sadio Mane was judged offside, but because of injury to Virgil van Dijk.

 

The Dutch defender – who plays such a crucial role in Liverpool’s defence – limped off the pitch after he was brutally hacked down by Everton’s goalkeeper Jordan Pickford with a kungfu tackle.

 

WATCH: Klopp discusses VAR's impact on the Merseyside derby

 

Pickford was not penalised for the challenge, but the England goalkeeper conveyed an apology to van Dijk through Henderson.

 

However, “sorry’s no cure” for the damage to the central defender.

 

Initial reports suggest van Dijk may have ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament, which would rule him out for seven to eight months – meaning his season with Liverpool could be over.

 

And considering what a giant he is in the Liverpool set-up and how influential he is to the team, his absence could well spell the end of Liverpool’s title chances this season. Unless Jurgen Klopp changes their style of play to adapt to the Dutchman’s absence.

 

The injury report on the Liverpool defender originated from beIN Sport, but Liverpool sources have denied it, saying a scan of the injury had not been available at that stage, though they did express concern earlier about possible ligament damage.

 

WATCH: Relive Van Dijk's dream Liverpool debut with winning goal against Everton

 

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp said in his post-match conference: “I don’t know [how serious it is], I don’t know, but it is not good.

 

“Virgil played for us I don’t know how many games in a row. He plays with pain, he plays with pretty much everything, but he couldn’t play on. That’s not good.”

 

As if damage to van Dijk isn’t bad enough, Liverpool’s new signing Thiago Alcantara may also have suffered a similar injury after being brought down in the dying stages of the match by Richarlison, who was sent off. 

 

“When I left the pitch, Thiago told me in the red card situation with Richarlison he thinks he got injured. We will see if it’s true or not, but if he felt like this then we need to have a look,” said Klopp.

 

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