MATCHDAY PROGRAMME

DOHA, QATAR - Wednesday, November 23, 2022: Japan players line-up for a team group photograph before the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Group E match between Germany and Japan at the Khalifa International Stadium. Back row L-R: goalkeeper Shuichi Gonda, Hiroki Sakai, Ko Itakura, Ao Tanaka, Water Endo, Maya Yoshida. Front row L-R: Junya Ito, Takefusa Kubo, Daizen Maeda, Yuto Nagatomo, Daichi Kamada. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Which games Wataru Endo will miss for Liverpool during Asian Cup

Wataru Endo will play his last game for Liverpool before the Asian Cup when Newcastle arrive at Anfield on New Year’s Day, followed by an extended absence.

Endo has become increasingly key for Liverpool during Alexis Mac Allister‘s injury layoff, with Jurgen Klopp hugely impressed with his performances.

But as the manager explained after the 2-0 win at Burnley: “It’s a bit of a shame he finds his feet and now he goes to the Asian Cup.”

Liverpool will lose both Endo and Mohamed Salah to mid-season tournaments directly after Sunday’s clash with Newcastle, with the latter heading to the Africa Cup of Nations.

Salah’s time away depends on the success of Egypt in a strong field, but for Endo and Japan, they head to the Asian Cup as favourites.

SHEFFIELD, ENGLAND - Wednesday, December 6, 2023: Liverpool's Wataru Endo during the FA Premier League match between Sheffield United FC and Liverpool FC at Bramall Lane. Liverpool won 2-0. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

The 30-year-old is already guaranteed to miss four Liverpool fixtures due to his participation in the group stage:

But there is a strong chance he is away for longer than the group stage, with progress to the following stages meaning a delayed return:

  • Last 16: Jan 28-31 – missing Chelsea (H, Jan 31)
  • Quarter-finals: Feb 2-3 – missing Chelsea (H, Jan 31), Arsenal (A, Feb 4)
  • Semi-finals: Feb 6-7 – missing Chelsea (H, Jan 31), Arsenal (A, Feb 4)
  • Final: Feb 10 – missing Chelsea (H, Jan 31), Arsenal (A, Feb 4), Burnley (H, Feb 10)

If Liverpool beat Arsenal in the third round of the FA Cup, Endo would also miss the fourth-round tie, which will land on January 27/28.

Endo could therefore miss a total of eight games for Liverpool, with his latest return likely to be away to Brentford in the Premier League on February 17.

DOHA, QATAR - Sunday, November 27, 2022: Japan's Wataru Endo during the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Group E match between Japan and Costa Rica at the Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium. Costa Rica won 1-0. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

That would mean over a month-and-a-half out of action for his club, inclusive of pre-tournament training with Japan and the Asian Cup running from January 12 to February 10.

Mac Allister should be back fit in the coming days, with hope that he could even be involved against Newcastle, but Klopp will almost certainly need to rotate his No. 6 options.

The loss of Endo will be a big blow, with the £16 million signing from Stuttgart proving an invaluable addition to the squad.