Jurgen Klopp’s assistant hints Liverpool FC won’t sign new centre-half in January
Liverpool FC number two Pep Lijnders appears to play down the chances of the Reds signing a new centre-half in the January transfer window
Liverpool FC assistant manager Pep Lijnders has hinted that the Premier League champions won’t sign a new centre-half in the January transfer window.
The Reds finished their 1-1 draw with Fulham at Craven Cottage on Sunday night with Jordan Henderson and Fabinho playing at centre-half in Jurgen Klopp’s XI.
The title holders lost Joel Matip to an injury at half-time to raise doubts about the former Cameroon international’s fitness for the visit of Tottenham Hotspur on Wednesday night.
Liverpool FC have been ravaged by injuries in the 2020-21 season so far, losing first-choice centre-half pairing Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez to long-term knee injuries.
The Reds have been linked with a swoop to sign a new centre-half in the January transfer window to ease their injury crisis at the back.
Liverpool FC have been rumoured with an interest in Ajax defender Perr Schuurs and RB Leipzig centre-half Dayot Upamecano since Van Dijk’s injury blow.
However, Liverpool FC number two Lijnders appeared to play down the chances of the Reds signing a new defender and instead dropped a big hint that the club will rely on their Academy.
“I think the individual is very important, but I think what separates us from other teams and what I feel is really different is we have a strong culture and we have a clear identity of play, and that even with losing individuals we stay focused on this collective idea,” Lijnders told Liverpool FC’s website.
“There’s a saying that without good players there’s no collective, but without a collective there will never be success.
“If you stay focused on improving our way of play, encouraging each individual to take more initiative, to attack more, to evolve the team, then I feel that there is not a back-up plan, it’s focusing on our way and our idea.
“It’s always like this but some devastating moments create life-changing moments for other players because we have so much faith in our young blood, in the players we brought up, our own players.
“These moments where you lose a top, top player automatically creates a big chance for a young player, because we invest a lot of time and we have a big commitment to them to be part of our squad.
“What I’m trying to say is: I feel really the best back-up plan is the academy. If the academy is right and there’s a fluid process between the academy and the first team, the best back-up plan is always young players because they never let you down – never, never.”
The Reds confirmed at the weekend that their in-form summer signing Diogo Jota is set to be sidelined for two months.
Liverpool FC will host Premier League leaders Tottenham Hotspur in their next Premier League game at Anfield on Wednesday night.