Jurgen Klopp has cooled suggestions Liverpool could delve into the January transfer window despite an injury crisis which is worsening by the week.
Joe Gomez (knee) and Jordan Henderson (thigh) are the latest to be added to their injury list in the last week. Gomez looks likely to miss the season. It was left to Gareth Southgate to detail the awkward conversation he had to hold with Klopp about the player.
With Virgil Van Dijk also sustaining a serious injury, Klopp is again down to one senior centre-back in Joel Matip. The Cameroon defender has a chequered injury record himself.
To add to their despair, Trent Alexander-Arnold remains absent with a calf problem. It all means Klopp will be able to field only one of his first-choice back four against Premier League leaders Leicester on Sunday.
The Reds boss is also waiting for the return of Fabinho, who can also play in midfield and defence. Thiago Alcantara, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Rhys Williams and Neco Williams are also injury doubts this weekend. Mohamed Salah has tested positive for Covid-19 to take the unavailable list potentially into double figures.
“If we can do something in January I have no idea. If we want to do something in January I have no idea. We’ll just have to see,” said Klopp.
“That we look for solutions and the transfer market – that is clear – but in the moment we have the situation we have.
“I don’t want to compare situations but when I came to Dortmund in 2008 my two centre-halves were 19 and turned 20 that winter and we played with them for that entire time. Mats Hummels and Neven Subotic.”
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However, Klopp has suggested he could look to within and dip into their academy pool.
“We have talent here. They are young – 18, 19, 23 – and we have more experienced players, so we will see. Everybody has a chance.
“They can smell the chance and they step up. They want to show they are ready and we will see.
“We have midfielders – not in the moment but hopefully in a couple of weeks. They can play the more defensive role as well. For the moment we are fine.
“I’m really confident it will work out with the boys. Then hopefully we can convince the rest of the world as well.”