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Klopp says Van Dijk injury ‘not good’ as Liverpool dealt derby blows by Pickford and VAR

16:48 BST 17/10/2020
Virgil van Dijk Liverpool 2019-20
Jurgen Klopp has suggested that a problem picked up by a Dutch defender after tangling with Everton’s goalkeeper could keep him on the sidelines

Jurgen Klopp admits the injury that forced Virgil van Dijk out of Liverpool’s eventful derby date with Everton is “not good”.

The Dutch defender lasted less than 11 minutes against the Toffees in a 2-2 draw at Goodison Park.

He was forced from the field and went straight down the tunnel after tangling with Jordan Pickford.

The Everton goalkeeper came flying out to meet the Liverpool centre-half as a looping ball dropped inside the box.

Pickford connected with Van Dijk at knee height, leaving a talismanic figure for the Reds writhing on the deck.

The Dutch defender got back to his feet after receiving treatment, but was in no position to continue and had to be replaced.

Klopp has now suggested that Van Dijk could be set for an untimely spell on the sidelines, with Liverpool preparing to open their Champions League campaign against Ajax on Wednesday and already without first-choice keeper Alisson, although no timescale has been put on his recovery as yet.

Quizzed on the severity of Van Dijk’s ailment, the Reds boss told reporters: “I don’t know. It’s not good.

“Virgil played I don’t know how many games in a row, he plays with pain, he plays with pretty much everything.

“But he couldn’t play on. That’s not good.”

Pickford has apologised for the rash challenge that laid Van Dijk low, but that offers little consolation to the Reds.

Klopp is still confused as to how the Everton shot-stopper escaped any punishment for a wild challenge, despite the offside flag going up.

VAR reviewed the incident and decided no red card was required, with technology also working against Liverpool towards the end of a dramatic encounter as Jordan Henderson saw a late goal ruled out on the back of a marginal offside call.

On the decision not to punish Pickford up for his wild lunge, Klopp added: “I haven’t seen it again. Only in the game, and for me it was a clear penalty that I saw.

“Obviously, we saw the flag went up for offside. I still thought it was worth having a look for the foul but that didn’t happen.

“We have no power there. We just sit here and we discuss it. We have to ask other people about that, not me.

“It’s not a challenge a goalkeeper can do in the box. If it’s not offside it’s a 100 per cent penalty.”