In Saturday’s Merseyside derby, the Dutchman was cut down by Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford in the opening minutes. TV 2’s football expert Brede Hangeland branded it “the ugliest tackle I can remember seeing.”
Van Dijk limped off the field and was sent for further investigation. Well, Liverpool confirm that the star player must undergo surgery for a ligament injury in the knee. How long he is out has not been determined, the club reports.
According to The Guardian and several British media, van Dijk has injured his anterior cruciate ligament. Sources in Liverpool are reluctant to rule out that he will not play more this season, but he will be out for a long time.
Liverpool want to know more about the injury after the operation, writes The Guardian.
– It depends on how much he has damaged the anterior cruciate ligament, but it is the worst injury a football player can get. It is potentially career threatening. It is not a given that van Dijk will return and is the world’s best midfielder. This is the worst news Liverpool could get, says TV 2’s football expert Brede Hangeland.
– It is first and foremost a pity for van Dijk, precisely because that type of cruciate ligament injury is so devastating. It’s a huge problem for Liverpool. He has been their most important player for a long time now, and is the clear leader in the defensive line, agrees Mina Finstad Berg.
This summer, Liverpool sold Dejan Lovren. Thus, they only have Joël Matip and Joe Gomez as pure stopper alternatives left. In some matches, manager Jürgen Klopp has used midfield anchor Fabinho in stoppage time.
– Is Liverpool no longer the title favorite?
– It’s less favorite than they were. Jürgen Klopp would prefer a cruciate ligament injury to anyone other than van Dijk, because he is irreplaceable for that team, Hangeland answers.