Jurgen Klopp reveals that coronavirus pandemic has made it ‘unlikely’ that Liverpool will sign a centre back in January… as he admits club would ‘usually’ act in this situation but finances have been hit hard
- Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez remain long-term absentees for Liverpool
- Rhys Williams, Nat Phillips and midfielder Fabinho have all played at centre bac
- Jurgen Klopp admitted a ‘short-term’ fix this month would ‘not be right’ for them
- He cited the coronavirus pandemic as the reason behind the club’s thinking
Jurgen Klopp had admitted Liverpool are unlikely to sign a centre-back in this month’s transfer window due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
The Premier League champions have relied on youngsters like Rhys Williams and Nat Phillips, as well as midfielder Fabinho, to fill in in central defence following the long-term injuries sustained by Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez.
The Athletic reported earlier on Thursday that Klopp believes there is little point in signing a stop-gap defender this month, amid links with Schalke’s Ozan Kabak, RB Leipzig’s Dayot Upamecano and Brighton’s Ben White.
Jurgen Klopp had admitted Liverpool are unlikely to sign a centre-back this month
The club have suffered long-term injuries to Joe Gomez (left) and Virgil van Dijk (right)
But speaking ahead of his side’s FA Cup tie at Aston Villa, the German insisted an addition was not likely due to the financial slump caused by coronavirus, and that a short-term fix would likely not be the right solution for his club in any case.
‘No, I cannot say definitely we will not bring one in, it is just not likely because of the situation in world,’ Klopp said.
‘We should not forget the situation is a tough one for all people and for football clubs as well.
‘There will be few clubs with absolutely no financial problems, and this club has always been and will always be very responsible with what we do.
Midfielder Fabinho (right) has also played at the back to help his side out in the injury crisis
‘If the world was a normal place, everything was fine and we had won the league and the Champions League, and the club was in best possible situation and then you have three senior centre-halves, plus Fabinho plus kids, all injured, is that a situation we would usually do something? Yes, definitely.
‘But we are not in that situation so I don’t know if something will happen or not. Maybe we could do something but it would be a short term solution and we don’t have that short-term solution, but that is not right because it doesn’t help really.
‘It is not the best situation for the whole planet so why should it be for a football club?’
The German boss however may be boosted by the return of a central defender this month in the form of Joel Matip.
Inexperienced duo Rhys Williams (left) and Nathaniel Phillips (right) have also filled in
The 29-year-old former Cameroon international suffered an adductor injury in the home draw against West Brom this month and was ruled out for at least three weeks.
Recent reports have suggested Matip could be fit for the crunch top-of-the-table clash against Manchester United at Anfield on January 17, and Klopp admits the club will do all they can to ensure he is ready to go against Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men.
‘We are trying to work on that. Until the United game we still have nine days so we will try,’ Klopp added.
‘If it will be United or a few days later I don’t know, but after the United game we play every three days again, so we will see.’
Klopp may also be boosted by the return of Joel Matip ahead of the Manchester United game