Michael Owen has suggested that Virgil van Dijk could be back for Liverpool in time for the “big games at the end of the season”.
Van Dijk is currently on the long road to recovery from an ACL injury. He suffered the injury after a challenge from Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford in the Merseyside derby.
It is still too soon to say how long van Dijk will be out for. There are some fears that he could miss the entire season.
However, reports earlier on Friday revealed he has now begun his rehabilitation. It is a step in the right direction, at least.
Now, former Reds striker Owen has admitted that van Dijk’s absence is a big blow for Liverpool. However, he thinks they could be able to call on him again if needed before the end of the season.
He told talkSPORT: “It’s when you get really tested because in some games, if you’re in a good team that are better than the rest, you can carry one or two players that aren’t quite at it.
“But it’s when you get into the quarter-finals of the Champions League, it’s when you play Manchester City at Anfield, things like that, then you can’t have any passengers in your team.
“Of course, Liverpool, the whole squad is very good. But you’ve just got one or two players in any team, I don’t care who you are, that you look to and carry you to certain situations.
“When you’re in the tunnel before the game you look in front of you and behind you and think, ‘right, we’ve got a chance because we’ve got him in our team’. Van Dijk in particular is one of them.
“He’s a huge miss, but hey, who’s to say he won’t be back for those big games at the end of the season?
“A cruciate ligament injury is sort of five to six months if everything goes perfectly. So you never know. It’s a huge blow.”
Owen still thinks Liverpool can win league
Liverpool have also lost van Dijk’s main centre-back partner Joe Gomez to a long-term injury. It has left them with a lack of depth at the back.
However, Owen still thinks Liverpool have enough to keep competing in their defence of their Premier League title this season.
He added: “I have no doubts if these players were fit then Liverpool are the best team in the land. I think they would win the Premier League.
“This has now thrown it up in the air a little bit.
“From a Premier League point of view, I still think they can get by in virtually every game.”