Liverpool need to sign a defender who is ready to slot into Jurgen Klopp’s first-team on January 1st, according to the club’s former striker John Aldridge.
With Virgil van Dijk likely to miss the rest of this season after undergoing knee surgery, the injury to Joe Gomez while he was training with England last week was a hammer blow to the reigning Premier League champions.
Now Aldridge – who was a title winner with Liverpool in the late 1980s – has urged the club’s transfer committee to back Jurgen Klopp with a big name signing when the next transfer window opens for business.
“Just when Jurgen Klopp dared to believe that he could navigate his way to success without Virgil van Dijk, he suddenly finds himself staring at mission impossible,” Aldridge wrote on www.sundayworld.com.
“The injury to Joe Gomez has plunged Liverpool into turmoil. While it looked like they were finding a way to win without Van Dijk, the defensive issues have now reached breaking point.
“Unfortunately, Gomez’s situation cannot be solved quickly and, when you throw in the reality that Joel Matip also has fitness worries, there is only one solution left.
“While Fabinho can slot in at centre-back and do a good job, Jordan Henderson could play in there at a push, and young lads like Nat Phillips and Rhys Williams are showing real potential, Liverpool need to make their move to bring in a central defender now.
“That player needs to be ready to come to the club when the transfer window opens on January 1st, he needs to have a good fitness record – and also have top level experience.”
‘Everyone knows Liverpool are desperate’
“Signing that player in the upcoming transfer window when every club in Europe now knows Liverpool are desperate will not be easy, and it will also be expensive.
“Yet, this is a moment when Klopp needs to be backed, as not even the greatest manager in world football can dig himself out of this hole.
“Liverpool have eight Premier League games to play in what is left of 2020, starting with league leaders Leicester next weekend, which will not be an easy game with Jamie Vardy always a threat for them.
“Games against Wolves, Tottenham and Crystal Palace will also be big tests, and the opposition will be smelling blood when they come up against Liverpool now.
“Everyone always wants to beat the champions, but this is clearly a Liverpool side that have had their feet taken from underneath them and they just have to find a way to get through it.”