Gareth Southgate revealed Joe Gomez was in a “fair bit of pain” after sustaining a knee injury during England training, leaving him to hope “it’s not what it might be.”
Liverpool’s worst fears were confirmed before a game of international football could even be played out, with Gomez the latest name added to a nightmare list of injuries.
On Wednesday afternoon news emerged that the centre-back had sustained an injury during England training, with various reports describing it as either “serious” or “significant.”
While details were then scarce, it has now been revealed that Liverpool’s No. 12 has sustained damage to his knee – anticipated to be the same one which saw him undergo ACL surgery in 2015.
That initial injury came in the international break which followed the appointment of Jurgen Klopp and was the first of a string of unlucky and serious injuries to his ankle.
And following the news of his injury and ahead of England’s matchup with Ireland, manager Gareth Southgate fronted the media and provided some information on Gomez – with the key being no one was around him at the point of injury.
“I can’t tell you how serious it is, he is yet to have scans. What was upsetting was he was in a fair bit of pain,” Southgate said.
“Nobody was around him when the injury happened. I didn’t like that element of it but we have to wait and see what the scans show.
“We’re all hopeful for him that it’s not what it might be, but it’s not a good situation. I don’t see him being involved in the games with us, that’s for sure.
“We can’t speculate [on ACL] the exact nature of the injury, it’s not possible until we’ve seen the scans.
“My immediate thoughts are with him, he’s had some difficulties with injury in the past and we are hoping and praying as much as we can that it’s not going to be a long-term one.”
This is his third serious injury to strike while on duty with England following on from the ACL with the U21s in 2015 and an ankle injury in March 2018.
The club have since confirmed that he has been withdrawn from the England squad and “will undergo further diagnosis on the issue with Liverpool’s medical team.”
After being installed as the key man in defence in the absence of Virgil van Dijk he has suffered another heartbreaking setback to add to both his and the Reds’ woes.
It is a major blow to Liverpool with centre-back options already thin, as now Joel Matip remains the only fit senior option moving forward and will likely be partnered by Fabinho on his return from a hamstring injury.
While Rhys Willians and Nat Phillips can expect more game time in the interim, it ensures a new centre-back in the January window has become the utmost priority as Liverpool’s No. 12 could be out for months.