Liverpool could have more than handled Joel Matip’s absence with the option of Ibrahima Konate waiting in the wings fresh from his injury return.
It will not have suited the Reds well to hear of a minor muscle concern for the Frenchman ahead of potentially their biggest game of the season.
The former RB Leipzig star could yet still start the contest at Anfield, though, knowing the hosts’ track record it seems plausible that no risks will be taken while the likes of Trent Alexander-Arnold and the Cameroonian remain out of action, leaving Nat Phillips (on only 63 Premier League minutes this term) to partner Virgil van Dijk.
It’s perhaps just as plausible that James Milner will occupy our No.66’s right-back spot to allow the comparatively more assured No.2 to start in the heart of the backline.
However, we imagine that our coaching team might balk at the idea of the 36-year-old starting given the ongoing concerns we’ve had in that general area.
Jurgen Klopp will have to get this one decision absolutely spot-on if we are to have any hope of taking home the lion’s share of the spoils in a game that could very well define our league campaign.