Ozan Kabak looks increasingly likely to miss Liverpool’s crucial Premier League clash with Manchester United, according to The Athletic‘s James Pearce.
The Lowdown: Liverpool’s centre-back issues continue
The Reds have suffered a season to forget, failing to defend their league title and potentially also missing out on a top four finish.
Arguably the biggest reason for Liverpool’s struggles has been lengthy injuries to centre-backs, with Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez and Joel Matip already missing for many months.
The Latest: Kabak likely to miss Man United clash
Writing on Monday, Pearce admitted that Kabak was ‘highly unlikely’ to be fit for Thursday’s trip to Old Trafford, which could be pivotal in the race for Champions League football for the visitors.
A ‘muscle problem’ is keeping the 21-year-old on the sidelines at a crucial point in the season, only adding to Liverpool’s woes. The injury comes at an inopportune time for Kabak and the Reds, with the 21-year-old giving a strong performance against Newcastle recently as he continues growing into his role at Anfield.
The Verdict: Fabinho back in defence?
Pearce mentioned that Kabak’s absence could mean that Fabinho reverts to the centre-back role in which he has played in 21 times this season, according to WhoScored.
While this a far from ideal scenario for such a big game, the thought of the hugely inexperienced Rhys Williams coming up against United’s dangerous attack doesn’t bear consideration. He was handed just a five out of 10 rating by This Is Anfield against Saints, whose form in 2021 has been miserable, to say the least.
There is enough midfield depth to be able to make up for Fabinho not being there, with Thiago, Gini Wijnaldum and one other player starting the match.
James Milner’s experience and leadership arguably makes him favourite to come in, especially given his clear dislike for United, while Jurgen Klopp could play all four attackers in a 4-2-3-1 formation, if he is feeling bold.
In other news, Liverpool have received a big boost in their efforts to sign a Premier League player this summer. Find out who it is here.
Click here to comment on this articleor
Give us feedback on your Football Transfer Tavern experience