In a Liverpool country full of bad news, just learning that a starting player who looked set to be sidelined with injury is now passing fit for Leicester City is a small, but not insignificant, boost to our collective malaise. It’s understood that Emre Can plowed his way through full training yesterday and is likely to be ready to plug back into the side on Saturday.
Can has been nursing a knock since the Burnley match last weekend and as of yesterday morning his status was still unclear. But if the German midfielder’s had a run out and made it through the Jürgen Klopp training gauntlet, he should be ready for a start against Leicester.
And Liverpool will need all the senior heads they can get onto the King Power Stadium pitch tomorrow as injuries have already began to chip away at the first team. Joël Matip and Dejan Lovren are both doubts for the weekend’s match. Lovren is expected to miss another match at least. While there’s is some room to believe that Matip’s hamstring injury is minor enough for his super, Matip body to heal in time for kick-off.
So, the best case scenario for the match includes Ragnar Klavan at left center back. Beyond that the situation deteriorates with Klavan playing alongside young Joe Gomez who in turn will be linking up with the even younger Trent Alexander-Arnold on the right flank. TAA has been impressive and I’m fully on board with him starting at Leicester. But anyone can see that this scenario is problematic for Liverpool winning football matches.
Neither Gomez nor Klavan are vocal and commanding in the defense. Combine that with slow sprint speeds, inexperience, and Alberto Moreno’s defensive acumen on the left and Liverpool’s back four could be a shocker in a match where the team and supporters will be desperate to shake off a four-game stretch without a win.
It’s untested but surely a Gomez/Matip partnership would alleviate just a little anxiety amongst the fanbase. Pop Emre right in front of them as the deepest midfielder and Liverpool might have themselves some solidity at the back along with a bit of gusto.
It could get nervy out there at the King Power. So, keep your heads up and always remember that no defensive reinforcements are coming no matter how much we’re baffled by the lack of center back recruitment from the manager. You might be surprised to learn that these hopeless feelings toward the club’s progress get you free admission into Liverpool country for life. Sign up today!