Jurgen Klopp admitted that Joel Matip’s muscle injury didn’t look “too good” after the defender was forced off the pitch in the second half of Liverpool’s 1-1 draw with West Brom on Sunday.
After dominating the first period, the Reds squandered their early lead thanks to Sadio Mane when Semi Ajayi equalized with less than 10 minutes left.
The result ends Liverpool’s perfect home record in the Premier League in 2020/21, while allowing rivals to close the gap in the title race.
However, perhaps equally worrying was the fact that Matip left the pitch on time, squeezing his groin, to be replaced by 19-year-old Rhys Williams.
Klopp can hardly afford another serious defensive injury, with Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez both already gone for the long haul after knee surgeries.
“Joel told me he felt something in his adductor muscle, obviously not too good,” Klopp admitted after the game, via the Liverpool Echo.
“I don’t know how serious it is now, but it was bad enough that he had to leave the field.
“This is not the first time that a center-half has been injured. This is of course not good. He was in very good shape again. We cannot change this and we must accept it and continue. “
Without Matip, Liverpool’s other center-back options read: Nathaniel Phillips (23, three appearances in total), Rhys Williams (19, 10 appearances in total) and Billy Koumetio (18, one senior appearance), as well than converted defender Fabinho.
The latest injury scare has further reinforced calls for Liverpool to buy in January, with club legend Jamie Carragher insisting that a new player is a must.
“It is essential that Liverpool sign someone in January,” Carragher told Sky Sports. “I said that as soon as Van Dijk was injured against Everton.
“I still believe Liverpool are the best team in this league even without Van Dijk and most people would say they are favorites to win the league. I would say the only way not to win is if they have issues down center, where Rhys Williams or Nat Phillips have to play for an extended period.
“I don’t necessarily mean bringing a center back for £ 70-80million, like a Van Dijk-type signing, and not necessarily someone to go straight into the squad, just someone there for that Liverpool do not end up with two youngsters. boys for five or six weeks, if Fabinho were to fall injured.
“At the moment Liverpool Football Club have a senior center available so they have to do something in January.”