Former Liverpool player Jamie Redknapp spoke to Sky Sports this past week about Liverpool’s current injury woes.
The midfielder turned pundit, who made about 308 appearances for the club, believes that Joe Gomez’s injury puts a massive strain on Jurgen Klopp’s resources.
“From an England point of view, it’s a disappointment for Gareth Southgate, but for Jurgen Klopp, if this is a long-term one and you’ve got no Virgil, no Joe Gomez, that puts an enormous amount of stress on this squad from a team that were red-hot favourites at the start of the year”, he said.
“It’s certainly going to change things and for everybody else involved, that back two have been so impressive at times. It’s not been easy with no Virgil at the moment, but no Virgil and no Gomez is going to make it even more difficult.
“You don’t want to bring in someone for the sake of it for £40 million or £50m because you know you’ve got someone coming back really quickly. But if you’ve lost Gomez as well, you’re certainly looking to get into the market and try and bring in someone in January or as quickly as you can, be it a loan, be it a signing - but it’s not going to be easy to get players in.
“Your hands are tied to a certain extent because straight away, everyone knows you’re desperate so the prices are going to get inflated. Liverpool have worked the market so well, they’ve not always bought the big stars, they’ve made them stars. Virgil may be the opposite, they paid £75m for him but what his fee now would be, maybe three times as much as that because he’s such an incredible player.
“Defenders are at a premium because there’s not many good ones around that can play like Virgil, that can defend like Joe Gomez, who is still a young man.”
Gomez has undergone surgery and is now on the road to a fairly long recovery.
Redknapp expressed sympathy for the 23-year old, saying, “I’m choked for Joe Gomez if it is a bad injury. He’s a young man who has already had knee injuries and come back brilliantly. I’m a big fan of his, he seems like a really good, down-to-earth player.
“I remember seeing him many years ago playing for Charlton in the FA Youth Cup and thinking, ‘This is a star of the future’ and he’s certainly proved that at Liverpool. I just hope it’s not going to be anything too serious.
“Right now, Liverpool need Joe. I thought he was unlucky with the penalty decision [against Man City] but his form has been really good and he’s looked like a real leader.
“When you’ve got someone like Van Dijk who is so instrumental and he leads from the front, sometimes you can afford to hide behind someone like that who is so great but without Virgil, everyone else has to step up and become a leader.
“I’m sure we were going to see Joe impress even more than before because of the pressure that was perhaps on him and you become even more serious about your business because you can’t rely on the colossus of Van Dijk.”