The Reds are in for a tough game when they face ‘hungry for points’ Watford at Vicarage Road on 16th as their request to have the game postponed was denied. Klopp will be forced to plan his squad as best as he can when he faces Watford without the likes of Allison, Fabinho and Firmino.
After an almost dismal performance against rivals Manchester City in the Premier League last weekend, Liverpool’s hopes of redemption against 15th-placed Watford are dealt a big blow as international duty called them out. Worse, Harvey Elliott and Alexander Arnold are also out, and perhaps Thiago.
Playing against a team that is desperate for points like Watford currently is, the worst thing that could happen to any opponent is probably going in without your best defenders, midfielders, or goalkeeper. Liverpool leave out six of their elite, and winning against the Hornets will be a tough ask.
But Klopp will be banking on Salah to get close to, or perhaps repeat his display of 2018 against their opponents when he scored four times.
With Salah’s great performance against The Citizens last weekend, Jurgen Klopp’s worries may be lessened, but six major absences in his squad could still be detrimental unless each of the players he settles on do their absolute best come 16th.
Watford will want anything but to be relegated… again. And their current position is anything but safe, so they will put their best foot forward without a doubt. A weakened opponent is an added advantage that they could make use of to get three points.
Klopp’s side won’t have it easy. They can only do their extreme best and hope that in-form striker Salah will do enough to fill their defence void with enough on-target attacks.
Rangers fear major exit for ‘key’ player wanted by clubs abroad
Scott Arfield has been a vital part of the Rangers team since joining in 2018, and his current form, especially after van Bronckhorst took charge, is nothing short of exemplary.
The 33-year old Scottish-Canadian’s display is on a high now, and he recently helped his side’s win against Livingston with his “unbelievable” (according to Richard Foster) 75th minute goal.
He is a must-keep, but according to transfermarkt, the reigning Scottish champions risk losing him and other senior team members, including Steven Davis and Allan McGregor, in the summer following contract expiry.
The Mirror’s print edition reported that the Gers fear letting their No. 37 go in exchange for nothing, given that USA clubs have their sights set on the midfielder, and his contract is only months away from expiry.
Money included or not, Scott’s departure could be a big blow come next season since he now practically determines Rangers’ performance (the one time he didn’t play after Gerrard’s exit is the only time Rangers dropped points.)
Hopefully, Rangers will consider holding talks to fight for the former Huddersfield Town’s contract extension, and he (Scott) is willing to stay in Scotland and at Ibrox, otherwise the double loss in terms of money and talent could hugely affect the Gers next season.
Liverpool win race for £50m Porto star
Liverpool are preparing a late £45 million bid for Porto striker Luis Diaz, who is also being pursued by Tottenham.
The Colombian winger was Jurgen Klopp’s first option for the summer transfer window, but due to Spurs’ significant interest, Liverpool have hastened their preparations.
Liverpool is thought to be proposing an initial £37 million, plus bonuses, which will only be activated if Diaz is a major success at Anfield.
Tottenham has been in discussions with Porto over Diaz, reportedly willing to spend up to £46 million for the player.
Spurs are reportedly willing to pay £37.6 million upfront for Diaz, with an extra £8.4 million in performance-related add-ons, according to reports in Portugal.
Spurs have already appeared to miss out on Wolves attacker Adama Traore, who appears poised to return to Barca on loan, and missing out on Luiz would be another major blow this month.
It is unclear whether Diaz will move to Anfield this month or wait till the end of the season. In 18 outings for his current club this season, he has managed to score 14 goals.
Sky Sports reporter Vinny O’Connor:
“Obviously, it’s far from done and could easily come to nothing.
“However, Liverpool view this as an excellent deal if it gets completed – very much close to a Diogo Jota-type fee. Also, it is far better value than the original €60m asking price.
“Diaz was Jurgen Klopp’s first choice for the summer, but they have brought those plans forward because it was clear if Liverpool didn’t act this window, the player would move on.
“This isn’t done and could yet collapse – the player is in Argentina with his national team, so it will be far from straightforward to complete the deal.
“However, if it does get done, it’s a big coup for Julian Ward, who is to succeed sporting director Michael Edwards in the summer. It was a deal in which Ward lead for the first time, but it is fair to say he’s been supported strongly by Edwards who put together the strategy to secure the player this month.”
Two Everton midfielders out for minimum of four weeks
After suffering injuries in the last week, Everton midfielders Abdoulaye Doucoure and Fabian Delph will both be out for at least four weeks.
The injury to Doucoure occurred in the second half of Everton’s 1-0 loss to Aston Villa on Saturday, while the injury to Delph occurred in training.
Duncan Ferguson, the interim manager, suddenly has a scarcity of fit midfield players, with Tom Davies also sidelined for a prolonged period.
Allan, Andre Gomes, and Jean-Philippe Gbamin, as well as Tyler Onyango, are available.
An Everton statement read: “Everton midfielders Abdoulaye Doucoure and Fabian Delph are expected to be out for a minimum of four weeks after sustaining injuries.
“Frenchman Doucoure was forced off in the 65th minute of Saturday’s Premier League match against Aston Villa at Goodison Park due to a groin problem.
“Subsequent tests have revealed the 29-year-old requires a period of rehabilitation under the care of Everton’s medical staff at USM Finch Farm.
“Meanwhile, Delph sustained a thigh injury during a training session this week and is now undergoing treatment with the club’s medical team.”
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