The 23-year-old has not played since injured his knee in November, with Reds manager admitting he is still ‘far’ from a comeback
Jurgen Klopp admitted it would be a surprise if Joe Gomez could play again this season, as the Liverpool boss looks to sign in late January to ease the club’s defensive crisis.
Gomez has not shown up since suffering a serious knee injury during a training session with England in November, with Klopp revealing on Friday that the 23-year-old was still ‘far’ from a back to action.
“Joe Gomez is actually pretty well placed, but far from back,” Klopp told reporters. “So he’s walking around, looks quite normal, isn’t running on the pitch yet, or even out of the gym.” It’s also a really difficult injury.
“Will he be available this season? When does the season end, May? It will be close at least I would say. I don’t expect… well, I’d be surprised if he came back this season, to be honest.
Klopp had earlier revealed that Liverpool would look to sign a new center-back ahead of Monday’s transfer deadline, with the Reds awaiting news of Joel Matip’s ankle injury in Thursday’s win over Tottenham.
While Fabinho is also expected to miss Sunday’s trip to West Ham and possibly the home game with Brighton on Wednesday, and with Virgil van Dijk, like Gomez, sidelined with a long-term knee injury, the need for a new defender is clear.
A host of names, understandably, have been linked, though Klopp admitted that it will be difficult to find the perfect fit so quickly, in terms of cost and style of play.
“In an ideal world, that would be the short term solution to be the long term solution as well,” he said. “Wow, that would be great! I don’t know if we can do it, but we’ll see.
“You know the situation with the middle halves over there. You know the clubs where the middle halves play. You know the clubs where they are obviously interesting because everyone is talking about them. Tell me if any of these clubs need money and need to sell a player?
“And if they need money, they want crazy money! I do not understand. As a football fan you can sit at home and think, ‘they have to do something’. But that’s not how it works.
“We see the situation. We have probably lost two of the best mid-halves in the entire market in six or seven weeks. For the whole season. It’s enormous. And then we have to find solutions at that time.
“The winter transfer market is opening up and everyone is saying ‘now you can do something’. We are trying. We see the situation. We don’t close our eyes. But while we are doing that we have to find solutions and play football and that is what we are doing.
“We played good football, maybe less [good] football too. To play your best season, you have to be lucky. You need luck with injuries. For us, the situation is as follows. We are unlucky in these times, but everyone expects us to play our best season.
“That’s okay, but we also have to find the solution to win the next football game and make the season as special as possible. This is what we are trying to do. “