Dejan Lovren says he’s ready for the challenge to replace Mamadou Sakho after the Frenchman was ruled out for 2 months.
“I’m ready and looking forward to playing,” says the 26-year-old centre-back.
After starting the season as Brendan Rodgers’ first-choice alongside Martin Skrtel, Lovren has found himself on the periphery since Jurgen Klopp‘s appointment.
His only starts under Klopp thus far have been in the cups, against Bournemouth and Rubin Kazan (away) – Liverpool kept a clean sheet in both games.
After signing for an eye-watering £20 million from Southampton last summer, Lovren started 32 games in all competitions, but failed to impress – something he puts down to not having pre-season at the club.
“Last year I had a tough year,” he told LFC’s official site. “I didn’t do pre-season with the team and everything was such a rush.
“Everyone, all together, has started better than last year. It was important for me that I had a good pre-season with the team and I’m feeling more comfortable now.”
Lovren and Skrtel will, by default, now become Klopp’s centre-back pairing over the next 2 months – which sees Liverpool play 11 games in 42 days, starting with the trip to Man City on Saturday.
“Every three days there will be a game, so we need to be clever in our preparations,” says Lovren.
“We know we won’t have as much training during the week and hopefully not so many injuries also – which is important at this time.
“It’s tough – the squad is not so big because we have so many injured players. We need to be smart, we need to know how to rest and play smartly. We need to keep the ball.”