Liverpool need 'miracle' after injury woes: Klopp

AFP , Wednesday 28 Feb 2024

Jurgen Klopp claimed Liverpool need "miracles" to get his walking wounded back in time to boost their quadruple bid.

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp. Photo: AFP

Klopp's side defied a host of injuries to win the League Cup 1-0 against Chelsea in Sunday's final at Wembley.

But Liverpool midfielder Ryan Gravenberch added to the club's mounting fitness crisis when he was stretchered off in the first half.

Gravenberch will miss at least two matches, starting with Wednesday's FA Cup fifth round tie against Southampton at Anfield.

Wataru Endo is also a doubt for the visit of the Championship promotion chasers Southampton after he left Wembley on crutches and wearing a protective boot.

That leaves Klopp without 13 first team players, including Mohamed Salah, Darwin Nunez and Dominik Szoboszlai, as the Reds try to add the Premier League, FA Cup and Europa League to last weekend's silverware.

"We need miracles with a few players. I don't want to rule them out for too long," Klopp told reporters on Tuesday.

"But it is touch and go with a lot of players who were not available for the final: Darwin, Mo, Dom - we have to see what they can do (on Tuesday).

"In an ideal world you'd think about these kind of things but we obviously don't live in an ideal world so we will see when the players arrive and they get checked."

Klopp is likely to have to rely on a number of the younger players who made such an impression at Wembley, with 19-year-olds Bobby Clark and James McConnell likely to start against Saints.

Although the pair have made just one start apiece in cup competitions this season, Klopp has faith in their ability to step up.

"First and foremost, they don't have to show anything. Our boys played in youth teams and under-21s and only came up recently and trained with us: absolutely nil experience but a lot of talent and they showed that," he said.

"What these boys have to do is to really enjoy what they are doing. They have to defend like men, otherwise they cannot play.

"I saw them doing that on Sunday and it obviously helped and it gave confidence and there are so many things you cannot buy."

Liverpool have made tentative moves to organise an end-of-season parade regardless of whether they win any more trophies.

The Reds want to mark the end of Klopp's nine-year reign after the German's recent bombshell announcement that he will step down at the end of the season.

"That is the one part which is not so cool that it could be seen as that" (a farewell to him), he said.

"I don't think that makes sense. But besides that, I am a big supporter of trophy parades and if there is a parade I will be on the bus, no doubt about that."

(For more sports news and updates, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter at @AO_Sports and on Facebook at AhramOnlineSports.)

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