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Blow for Liverpool as injury sidelines Thiago for 6 weeks

New Delhi: Liverpool have been hit by a piece of bad news early in the season as star midfielder Thiago Alcantara may spend the next few weeks on the sidelines.

The Spain international suffered a hamstring injury and was replaced by Harvey Elliott in the second half of the clash at Fulham on the opening day of the Premier League season on Saturday. He may be out of action for up to six weeks.

The midfielder is expected to be out of action until the middle of September. Hence, Alcantara will miss games against the likes of Manchester United (August 22), Newcastle United (August 31), and the Merseyside derby against Everton (September 3).

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Thiago arrived at Anfield for £25 million from Bayern Munich in September 2020. In the 2020-21 season, the Spain international made 24 Premier League appearances.

And last season, Thiago played 25 times in the top flight, yet was still voted in the PFA Team of the Year given the quality of his performances.

Liverpool are having problems in the midfield as Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is going through a hamstring injury and Curtis Jones is also sidelined due to a calf injury.

Naby Keita missed the Fulham stalemate (2-2) due to illness but is expected to be back for Monday’s clash against Crystal Palace.

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On the following matter Liverpool coach, Jurgen Klopp said, “A transfer must make sense now and in the long-term. We have eight midfielders. We still have enough midfielders. It’s not that we lack midfielders, it’s just some of them are injured. This isn’t a good situation, I don’t like it at all. We have to see how we react on that, but for sure not panic.”

Liverpool and Manchester United are set to clash on August 22, at Old Trafford. The two fixtures of the last season between the arch-rivals led to an aggregate score of 9-0 with United losing disastrously. The Red Devils lost 5-0 at Old Trafford and 4-0 at Anfield.

But in the pre-season fixture, the Reds faced a disastrous 4-0 loss. It will be interesting to see how Liverpool performs in an away tie without their top midfielders.

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Liverpool’s new plan

Indeed, there needs to be a change of personnel in the team to fill Thiago’s absence. Bringing Naby Keita into the midfield may be something the Liverpool boss may have to consider.

The Guinea international missed the Fulham game due to illness but is expected to be fit for the upcoming game. There are doubts around whether Jordan Henderson is as effective playing on the left-hand side of the midfield, whereas it’s a role Keita is well accustomed to.

Since Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Curtis Jones are unavailable for the Reds, the combination of Fabinho, Keita, and Elliott could be the best option for Klopp.


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