Mohamed Salah Liverpool

'Salah & Firmino injuries wouldn't hurt Liverpool' - Shaqiri & Sturridge can fill void, says Saunders

Liverpool now boast such strength in depth that injuries to key men such as Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino would not have a detrimental impact, claims Dean Saunders.

The Reds’ success in 2017-18, which saw them reach the Champions League final, was built around an ability to name a settled side.

Talismanic frontman Salah was able to score 44 goals across all competitions as a result of avoiding spells on the sidelines, with Firmino and Sadio Mane providing important support.

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Jurgen Klopp’s side continue to look to their attacking trio for inspiration, but a summer of big spending has bolstered the ranks – with Xherdan Shaqiri bringing added creativity - while others already at Anfield – such as Daniel Sturridge - are enjoying a new lease of life.

Former Reds frontman Saunders told the Daily Star of the options now available: “Well, they look really good don’t they. I think pre-season they were really good. I think the manager’s done the right thing.

“He’s looked at what was wrong last year, what was holding them back and he’s sorted the goalkeeper situation out. He’s signed [Naby] Keita, who looks like he could be a great player, as well as Fabinho and Shaqiri. So, he’s signed four players [with Alisson acquired as well].

“Now, when you look at the depth in the squad, if Salah’s injured, Shaqiri goes in and he can score goals at any level. And at £13 million you won’t get a better buy all season for a player who’s 26 and won 70-odd caps for his country.

“And the way he plays he can score goals, he can win them games. So, I think the manager’s done well.

Xherdan Shaqiri LiverpoolGetty

“You could argue that they could do with another centre-half but you look at midfield now they’ve got [Jordan] Henderson, [James] Milner, [Adam] Lallana, Keita, Fabinho and [Georginio] Wijnaldum all trying to get three slots really.

“And I think at a push he could play two sitting midfield players and play Shaqiri at number 10.

“I was really impressed with Lallana who’s not getting a game at the moment. Pre-season he was brilliant, he’s not getting a game.

“And obviously you’ve got Sturridge who’s had a good pre-season and he could play his part this season.

“If Firmino’s injured or not scoring, Klopp can stick him in. With his talents he’s without doubt one of the most talented strikers in the league, he just can’t stay fit.”