Liverpool have received another injury blow ahead of the season as new signing Loris Karius has been ruled out for 10 weeks with a broken bone in his hand.
The £4.7 million signing from Bundesliga outfit Mainz will return to England where he is expected to undergo surgery.
The injury occurred during a challenge with Dejan Lovren in the Redmen’s 1-0 International Champions Cup defeat against Chelsea on Wednesday.
He joins defenders Mamadou Sakho and Joe Gomez as well as Lucas in the injury room; all missing the opening of the 2016-17 campaign.
On a personal note it will be a sickener for Karius, who chose not to represent Germany at the Rio Olympics in order to be available for the opening two games for Liverpool.
“I would miss the first two league games of the season, and of course I want to play in them,” he said, justifying his decision not to play for his country.
Fellow new signing Alex Manninger, a veteran signed from Augsburg on a free transfer, will now deputise for Mignolet for the start of the campaign.
Liverpool face AC Milan in the International Champions Cup on Saturday night when England duo Daniel Sturridge and Nathaniel Clyne could play their first part in pre-season after returning from extended leave following Euro 2016.
The pair remained at the club’s Palo Alto training base for extra sessions rather than travel for the game against Chelsea but both are now working with the main group.
Belgians Mignolet, Divock Origi and Christian Benteke are slightly further behind in their programmes but are likely to be involved in one of the next two matches, with Roma next after Milan on Monday.