Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher has urged the Merseyside club to enter the January transfer market in order to strengthen their defense following the serious injury sustained by center-back and club captain Virgil van Dijk.
Liverpool confirmed on October 18th that Van Dijk had suffered an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury during Saturday's Merseyside derby draw against Everton and will require surgery. The Dutchman will be ruled out of action for anywhere between 6 to 8 months.
Virgil van Dijk joined Liverpool from Southampton in January 2018 for £75 million, a world-record transfer fee at the time for a defender. With Liverpool, van Dijk reached back-to-back UEFA Champions League finals in 2018 and 2019, winning the 2019 edition, Liverpool first Champions League triumph in fourteen years.
Van Dijk was also named the PFA Player of the Year and the Premier League Player of the Season in his first full season at the club. Van Dijk later won the FIFA Club World Cup and UEFA Super Cup with the team and helped end the club's 30-year league title drought by winning the 2019–20 Premier League title.
The 29-year-old has been an ever-present figure for Liverpool over the last two-and-a-half years. Van Dijk will not be able to play a major role in Liverpool's title defense this season but will be hoping to return in time to join the Netherlands squad for Euro 2021.
Jamie Carragher believes Liverpool are desperately short on options at center-back after Virgil van Dijk's injury
The injury to van Dijk leaves the likes of Joel Matip and Joe Gomez as Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp's only available senior options at center-back. Reds legend Jamie Carragher believes that Liverpool are now very vulnerable need to spring into action when the transfer window re-opens in January.
"I think Liverpool certainly have to go into the market in January, and not just because of van Dijk's injury, but Liverpool were weak in that area anyway," Carragher told Sky Sports.
" They lost Lovren before the start of the season now the other players in those positions are very injury prone. Yes, it's devastating news for Virgil van Dijk and we pass on our wishes and I'm sure everyone does. But I think for Liverpool, Jurgen Klopp and the club now, it's who can they get in?"
"I know the transfer window has just closed but they have to be ready on January 1st to bring someone in because they are really weak in that area and that could stop them from going on achieve what they want to achieve."
Liverpool have had a relatively slow start to the 2020-21 Premier League campaign. They currently sit in third place with ten points in five games, but their most immediate worry will be replacing Virgil van Dijk.Published 19 Oct 2020, 20:39 IST