Liverpool will be without Virgil Van Dijk against Newcastle this evening.
Virgil Van Dijk, Fabinho and Curtis Jones will miss the game due to suspected tested positive cases of Covid-19.
The club released the statement on twitter this evening.
"Fabinho, Curtis Jones and Virgil van Dijk will miss tonight’s Premier League fixture against Newcastle United after registering suspected positive tests for COVID-19."
Liverpool have plenty of depth at centre back to cover for Van Dijk. Joel Matip is fully healthy and enjoying a strong season. Ibrahima Konte has taken to the Premier League comfortably in his first season. Joe Gomez has barely played, but he is healthy and available for the most part.
Jones hasn't played for Liverpool in a while. He enjoyed a stretch in the first team after Harvey Elliott's injury, but soon suffered an injury of his own. Thiago Alcantara's form in his absence has been exceptional, especially in home games against lesser opposition where Liverpool can dominate the ball.
Fabinho's absence will hurt the team though.
Without Fabinho, Jordan Henderson must drop back into the holding role. This is particularly notable without Van Dijk. Since Curtis Jones can't step in and Gini Wijnaldum is long gone, that leaves Liverpool looking to Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain or Naby Keita. Oxlade-Chamberlain will be happy to drop back into midfield after playing as a false 9 last week.
Putting Oxlade-Chamberlain in midfield means Liverpool can return to their preferred starting three upfront with Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Diogo Jota. Or they can turn to fan favourite Divock Origi.
Jurgen Klopp on @LFC’s matchday programme ahead of their game vs. Newcastle. pic.twitter.com/Xpz5p6MuzV
— Luis Miguel Echegaray (@lmechegaray) December 16, 2021
Before Van Dijk, Fabinho and Jones were reported to be absent, Jurgen Klopp addressed Covid and vaccinations in today's match programme:
"My message around this has always been simple and clear, I hope. I trust experts. I follow the advice of smart, educated people who know their field because they've dedicated their lives to it and have studied it. We are clearly moving back to stricter measures around the team environment and at LFC we are absolutely okay with that.
"As I have spoken about before, we have a very high take-up of the vaccine at our club and have done for a long time. It might be 100 percent now or as close as is possible, so that's important."
Klopp's comments suggest that Van Dijk and his teammates are vaccinated. He himself revealed that he has received his booster shot also.
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