Virgil van Dijk: Liverpool defender wants knee surgical procedure and faces prolonged lay-off
Liverpool centre-back Virgil van Dijk needs to return stronger after studying he wants surgical procedure on the knee harm he sustained within the 2-2 draw at Everton.
The 29-year-old Netherlands defender was unable to proceed following a rash problem by Toffees keeper Jordan Pickford within the first half on Saturday.
It’s unclear how lengthy the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) harm will preserve him out for.
“I am prepared for the problem forward,” he mentioned in a post on social media.
The previous Celtic and Southampton centre-back went for a scan earlier than a specialist confirmed the extent of the harm.
“I am now totally targeted on my restoration and can do every thing I can to be again as quickly as potential,” mentioned the Dutchman.
“Regardless of the plain disappointment, I am a agency believer that inside problem lies alternative, and with God’s assist I am going to verify I return higher, fitter and stronger than ever earlier than.
“In soccer, as in life, I feel every thing occurs for a purpose and it is necessary to attempt to preserve level-headed whether or not going by the highs and lows.”
Returning to motion after ACL surgical procedure can take many months and Liverpool are refusing to specify how lengthy the Dutchman shall be out for till after his operation.
Surgical procedure is not going to be rapid and the operation has but to be organized.
Membership sources are reluctant to rule out a return to motion this season, as a lot will rely upon his rehabilitation.
Van Dijk has been a key determine for Liverpool since signing for them in January 2018 for £75m.
He performed each league recreation for the membership up to now two seasons as Liverpool completed second in 2018-19 earlier than profitable their first top-flight title in 30 years in 2019-20.
The Dutchman was additionally a number one determine for the facet as they gained the Champions League in 2019 and the Membership World Cup later that yr.
He had performed seven occasions for the Reds this season previous to the Merseyside derby.
Response – ‘It would hinder Liverpool’s title defence’
The harm may have “huge implications” for Liverpool’s season, based on BBC pundit Chris Sutton, who gained the Premier League as a striker for Blackburn in 1994.
“He’s their rock on the again, their organiser. Merely put, he’s irreplaceable. They will need to by some means fill that void. He’s such a giant participant for them,” he mentioned.
Van Dijk’s absence will depart supervisor Jurgen Klopp with Joe Gomez and Joel Matip as his important centre-backs in addition to the inexperienced Nathaniel Phillips, Rhys Williams and Sepp van den Berg.
Gomez and Matip have by no means began a match collectively as centre-backs for Liverpool. Earlier than Saturday’s Merseyside derby, the final time they each performed in that place for any a part of a recreation was the final hour of the 4-1 defeat by Tottenham in October 2017 at Wembley
Midfielder Fabinho deputised at centre-back within the win at Chelsea earlier this season.
“We can’t know till the tip of the season how a lot affect it is going to have on the Liverpool squad. There shall be a way of togetherness. It would positively hinder their defence of the title,” mentioned former Liverpool defender Stephen Warnock on BBC Radio 5 stay.
“It is that outdated cliche: ‘Let’s win it for Virgil and ensure we’ve one thing to have fun on the finish of the season.’
“However when you’re within the altering room, you look throughout and you have not received Virgil van Dijk – this massive colossus of a participant. Defensively when issues are going effectively and also you flip again and see Van Dijk, it is okay. Now you flip again and he is not there.
“It isn’t being disrespectful to the gamers which might be in there however he’s their primary centre-back – somebody who has carried out to such a excessive stage since he has come into the soccer membership.”
Along with Liverpool, the Netherlands shall be protecting their fingers crossed he shall be match to participate within the postponed Euro 2020, which is now set to happen from 11 June to 11 July 2021.
BBC Sport’s Simon Stone
That is actually horrible information for Liverpool.
The Premier League champions will not be placing a timescale on Virgil van Dijk’s possible absence however within the brief time period, they do not actually need to.
Few gamers have returned from cruciate ligament surgical procedure inside six months – and relying on the precise extent of the harm, it could possibly be longer.
Even a six-month absence would preserve Van Dijk out till the again finish of April. Successfully, it means Jurgen Klopp should do with out his defensive talisman and 2019 PFA Participant of the Yr for the remainder of the season.
It would stretch Liverpool’s defensive sources – and Matip and Gomez have a giant job forward of them in a season during which the bodily calls for shall be like no different given the diminished period of time the marketing campaign is being performed over.
The information will frustrate Liverpool even additional as a result of Everton keeper Pickford escaped punishment for the horrible deal with that inflicted the harm. Liverpool didn’t even get a free-kick.