‘Liverpool can cope without Van Dijk’ – Alisson unfazed by Bayern test

The Reds will be without their talismanic centre-half in a crunch Champions League clash, with their goalkeeper feeling they have adequate cover

Liverpool are capable of containing and competing with Bayern Munich despite having Virgil van Dijk suspended, claims Alisson.

The Reds are set to face the German giants in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 encounter on Tuesday.

Jurgen Klopp’s side will step out at Anfield without a talismanic presence at the heart of their back four, with Van Dijk set to serve a one-match ban for yellow card accumulation in the group stage.

His absence will be felt as an on-field leader, but Alisson is convinced that Liverpool boast enough experience and depth in their squad to counter the loss of one player.

The Brazilian goalkeeper told Premier League Productions: “All the defenders have played so when one comes in and one leaves, we don’t feel that loss because we’re all used to each other.

“That the backline are all able to communicate with each other, and know each other really well, is vital for any team.

“Once you’ve cracked it, you’ve got it – and we seem confident.”

While the Reds are “confident”, Klopp does face a selection dilemma at the back.

Joe Gomez and Dejan Lovren are nursing knocks, meaning that there is no obvious option to fill in alongside Joel Matip.

Fabinho may be the man to get the nod, having already covered at centre-half this season.

Alisson Liverpool 2018-19

Whoever is included, Alisson is aware that Liverpool will need to be at the top of their game in order to collect a positive result.

He is looking forward to that challenge, especially as a meeting with Bayern is set to give him the chance to line up at the opposite end of the field to World Cup winner Manuel Neuer.

The £65 million addition at Anfield said: “We know they’re a really good, strong team,

“Jurgen knows more about that team than anyone. There’s a lot of quality – and a great defence.

“[Neuer] is a big reference for me. When we got them in the draw I was pleased knowing I’d be against him.”

Alisson will be hoping that he is the one left celebrating on Tuesday evening, with Liverpool looking to break down Neuer and Co and claim an advantage heading into a return date at the Allianz Arena on March 13.