Virgil van Dijk struggling to be fit for Chelsea clash

28 September 2018

Jurgen Klopp has explained that Virgil van Dijk is a doubt for Liverpool’s Premier League clash with Chelsea on Saturday.


The Reds will be looking for revenge this weekend, following their League Cup exit at the hands of the Blues on Wednesday night.

Both Klopp and Maurizio Sarri made eight changes in midweek, however, so it is set to be two very different teams doing battle at Stamford Bridge.

A player the Merseysiders look likely to have to make do without is Van Dijk – someone who has arguably become the most important player at the club.

Speaking in Friday’s pre-match press conference, Klopp said the Dutchman could be unavailable with a rib injury picked up against Southampton, but feels he has plenty of other options available.

“He is a world-class player, and if you miss a world-class player it’s not cool,” Klopp told reporters.

“But Dejan Lovren played his first game after 10 weeks. He played an outstanding game (against Chelsea). (Joel) Matip has been out injured for a long but played two games in a row, which is fantastic.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Friday, January 5, 2018: Liverpool's match winning goal-scorer Virgil van Dijk celebrates with manager Jürgen Klopp after the 2-1 victory over Everton during the FA Cup 3rd Round match between Liverpool FC and Everton FC, the 230th Merseyside Derby, at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

“If Virgil is fit and can play, then he will play. If not, then obviously we have options and that’s really good.

“We could play football before Virgil van Dijk, and we can play without him, thank God. Bit I prefer that he is fit and available.”

Liverpool train on Friday and if Van Dijk takes part in that session then he should be okay to line up on Saturday evening.

Meanwhile, Trent Alexander-Arnold has been passed fit after recovering from illness, while Gini Wijnaldum is also available.

Liverpool are looking for a seventh consecutive win to start their Premier League campaign – only Chelsea have achieved that feat in the Premier Leagued era, back in 2005/06.

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