Forget Arsenal and Man City - Liverpool's biggest title race worry is this

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
Liverpool are leading the Premier League standings but there is still a way to go until the end of the season.

Following on from Jurgen Klopp's bombshell announcement that he will be leaving Liverpool, the team are pushing to give him the ultimate sendoff. The Reds have their first chance of picking up some silverware when they take on Chelsea in the Carabao Cup final on Sunday.

While any trophy during Klopp's final season in charge will be something to celebrate, fans are desperate to see Liverpool claim another Premier League title under the German's iconic reign. As things stand, the Reds are at the top of the tree with a two-point lead over Arsenal, and thanks to Manchester City's draw against Chelsea, the reigning champions can no longer overtake them with their game in-hand.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Liverpool have lost just two games this entire season so far, the least of any other club in the league, and they are tied with the Gunners for the most games won with 17. If they can keep up this form, there is nothing Man City or Arsenal can do to catch them. But of course, it's not as simple as that. Not only is it an extremely tall ask for Liverpool to not drop a single point between now and the end of the season, but their mounting injury list could be a cause for concern.

After failing to sign a new defender in the summer window, the news that Joël Matip had suffered an ACL injury sparked worries. The return of Andy Robertson and Kostas Tsimikas were big boosts for Liverpool's backline but since then, things have managed to get worse at the most difficult time.

Vice-captain Trent Alexander-Arnold has had two short injury stints this season but after returning from a recent knee problem, he is once again on the sidelines with a similar issue. Fortunately, Conor Bradley has taken to life as a starting right-back like a duck to water, but the rising young star can't plug all the leaks that are starting to appear in the team.

Liverpool's last match saw them secure a comfortable 4-1 win over Brentford but their victory on the road was a bittersweet occasion, and probably more bitter than it was sweet upon reflection. The Reds suffered a potential triple injury blow when Curtis Jones, Diogo Jota and Darwin Núñez all left the pitch with fitness concerns. Fortunately, Klopp confirmed that Núñez's withdrawal was mainly a precaution but it might not be a positive update for Jones or Jota.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"That Curtis cannot play on tells you it must be something because he would have played on at all costs actually," the boss said after the match, indicating the midfielder could be looking at a spell out of action. Klopp also said that Jota's knee injury 'looked the worst' of the bunch, which does not paint much hope at face value.

Further updates are yet to come but if Liverpool's clinical attack starts to diminish, it could be detrimental to their title chase. Mohamed Salah recently missed four league games due to a hamstring injury picked up at the Africa Cup of Nations but marked his comeback in typical style with a goal and assist off the bench against Brentford. However, a report from Egyptian outlet Kora Plus has claimed that the winger's injury has 'renewed' and he will miss the upcoming match against Luton Town.

While no official club statements have been released to rule out any of Liverpool's attackers, these are extremely worrying scenes and reports. Salah, Jota and Núñez have contributed a combined 33 goals and 19 assists in the Premier League so far this season.

At this point in the title race, every single game and goal is crucial, so while Luis Díaz and Cody Gakpo are also influential attackers, it will be a mammoth blow for Liverpool to lose the former three players, even for one match.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

It will be an unfathomably cruel outcome if Liverpool miss out on the Premier League title and the ultimate swan song for Klopp due to injuries. At this moment in time, a total of nine senior players are ruled out through injury for the Reds, the most in the entire league, which is not a statistic to boast about.

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

Along with the recent blows, Thiago Alcantara has regressed with his fitness and summer signing Dominik Szoboszlai is also out of action. Alisson has also missed the last two league games and Stefan Bajčetić remains a long-term absentee. Liverpool now have at least one key player in every area of the field out injured.

The team and fans alike will be praying for rapid recoveries all around but the cruel nature of injuries will dangle hopes in limbo until the club issues confirmation in black and white. Until then, the agonising waiting game begins.

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.