Liverpool legend Mark Lawrenson has called upon his former club to look no further than the Premier League to purchase a “ready-made” stand-in for the injured Virgil van Dijk in January.
The Reds suffered a hammer blow with the news last week of Van Dijk’s potentially season-ending injury.
The Dutch colossus is expected to be sidelined for the remainder of the season. One report even suggested the lay-off could be longer than initially feared.
With Dejan Lovren’s departure in the summer, central defensive options were already thin on the ground.
Joe Gomez’s form has been erratic over the last six months, while Joel Matip has had his own difficulties with staying fit.
Brazilian Fabinho has been called upon to deputise in recent matches, but struggled as Liverpool narrowly defeated Sheffield United on Saturday.
As such, attentions have turned to who Jurgen Klopp could target to bolster his defensive ranks in January.
Jamie Carragher recently joked that Wolves centre-back Conor Coady had topped Klopp’s wishlist. That approach may not be so farfetched, however, and Lawrenson believes the Liverpool-born star would be a perfect January addition.
Speaking to The Argus, Lawrenson said: “I would think Virgil will be out for the season.
“I think it’s a write-off because you’ve got to get match fit and that’s almost impossible nowadays because they don’t play reserve team football.
“If Liverpool are going to pay big money for somebody in January, they want absolutely ready-made.
“Conor Coady has had loads of shouts and he is a very good organiser who has played lots of games in the Premier League.”
Liverpool in Ben White’s future?
Speculation had swirled over Brighton centre-half Ben White’s future in the summer.
Leeds had numerous bids rebuffed for the man who spent last season on loan at Elland Road. Liverpool, meanwhile, had frequently been credited with interest.
Lawrenson gave his verdict on the viability of such a move, revealing that he believes White will soon wind up at a top six club.
“Maybe it might be a bit early for Ben,” he continued. “Would you spend that money thinking he might be ready in 18 months? I’m not sure.
“It wouldn’t surprise me if, 18 months or two years down the line, he goes somewhere big, in inverted commas.
“Whether it is Liverpool remains to be seen.
“But one thing with Klopp is he doesn’t give a damn how old you are.”