With Thiago Alcantara suffering a hamstring injury in the opening game of the Premier League season against Fulham on Saturday afternoon, Liverpool look to be kicking off the 2022-23 campaign with something of a minor crisis in midfield.
The Spanish international will be sidelined for an indefinite time and joins Curtis Jones, Naby Keïta, and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain on the sidelines. Still, with five options remaining for three midfield roles, Jürgen Klopp says the club won’t panic.
“I know what will now come up,” Klopp said of the inevitable transfer speculation he expects as a result of Thiago’s injury. “We said we don’t need a midfielder because we have enough, and we actually have enough, but things like this can happen.
“Nobody could imagine Curtis gets the thing he gets, Naby is only ill and will be back definitely next week, Oxlade happened early and Thiago is of course not good and we will see [but] a transfer must make sense now and in the long-term.”
It’s an injury list that leaves Fabinho and Jordan Henderson along with Harvey Elliott, Fabio Carvalho, and James Milner as options for the time being—but as Klopp was quick to point out, Keïta is expected to be back in time for the next game.
Few would have expected Oxlade-Chamberlain and Jones to get many minutes in the opening weeks of the season if everyone had been fit, too. Losing Thiago is a real blow, but Klopp insists he isn’t interested in any short-term solutions.
“We have midfielders, we have still enough midfielders,” he added. “It is not that we lack midfielders, but it’s just some of them are injured. This is not a good situation, I don’t like it, but we have to see how we react—for sure not panicking.”