After Nunez: Blow for Liverpool as another player withdraws from international duty – report

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Liverpool forward Cody Gakpo has become the second Reds forward to be forced out of international duty in recent days.

After Darwin Nunez was ruled out of action for Uruguay’s upcoming games due to a cut ankle, his club teammate has also had to withdraw from his country’s squad.

Ons Oranje reported this morning that the 23-year-old attacker is among five players who’ve left Netherlands’ training camp due to a virus.

Sven Botman, Matthijs de Ligt, Joey Veerman and Bart Verbruggen are the other players who join Gakpo in being forced out of their nation’s matches against France and Gibraltar, with Ronald Koeman calling in three replacements.

As per Dutch outlet AD, a spokesperson has said that the infection is not COVID-related.

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Just when Jurgen Klopp was beginning to enjoy having almost his full complement of attackers available again, the last week has suddenly seen his options potentially trimmed for the Manchester City game on 1 April.

Luckily, the international break gives Gakpo, Nunez and Luis Diaz a longer window than usual to get themselves in a position to feature for Liverpool in their next match.

The two South American forwards are both targeting returns for the trip to the Etihad Stadium (as per The Athletic and James Pearce), although the best case scenario for the Colombian would probably be an appearance off the bench, having not played for the Reds since the second week of October (Transfermarkt).

Thankfully, the nine-day gap to the Man City fixture should be time enough for the Dutchman to recover from his viral infection, although it remains to be seen just how much training time he’ll miss and whether this particular virus would have lingering effects.

We wish Cody well in his recovery and very much hoping that he and his fellow Liverpool attackers will be available to feature at the Etihad on Saturday week.

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