Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp hints he won’t buy a centre back in January

Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher said it was ‘paramount’ they signed a centre-back this month but Klopp is reluctant to spend just for the sake of it

Carl Markham
Monday 04 January 2021 10:41 GMT
Behind the scenes: Palace lose at home to Liverpool

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has played down the likelihood he will utilise the January transfer window to ease his problems in central defence.

Klopp's assertion "not all clubs have real money" and "doing 'something' makes no sense" suggests the Reds boss is happy to continue with the limited options he has at his disposal unless a gilt-edged opportunity arises.

He currently has no fit senior centre-backs with Virgil Van Dijk and Joe Gomez long-term absentees with serious knee injuries and Joel Matip sidelined for three weeks with a groin problem.

Fabinho has had to play the majority of the games in defence to cover and Klopp has relied on 19-year-old rookie Rhys Williams and Nat Phillips, whose only appearance before this season was a solitary FA Cup tie a year ago when he was recalled from a loan spell at Stuttgart specifically to play.

Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher said it was "paramount" they signed a centre-back this month but Klopp is reluctant to spend just for the sake of it.

"We have solutions in the squad obviously but we struggled still with injuries," said Klopp. "For most of the time with centre-half position. It can happen like this when it starts and does not stop.

"We have solutions with the squad but if we can do something in the window I dunno, it is like that. It is a very difficult transfer window as you can imagine. Not all of the clubs have real money.

"Doing something makes no sense. Doing the right thing makes sense. So far we have really liked what we have done. I liked Nat (in Wednesday's goalless draw at Newcastle).

"He is a clever boy and knows about his ability and is using it and doing the job and helped us a lot. We have three centre-halves and if Rhys had played Nat would not have played for five or six weeks and needed to get this out of his system."

At Newcastle the Spain international, a September signing from Bayern Munich, made his comeback from a knee problem after more than two months out and his creativity will offer Klopp a different option in midfield.

"He played 20 minutes for us which is special. He had only had two sessions with the team and for one of those, he was the 'joker'," he added.

"I am not sure you can count that but the game (at Newcastle) was the opportunity to do it and it was about creating, which is his best skill. We will see (if he starts). He has a chance.

"Honestly, the boys who did the job so far did exceptionally well so it is not we cannot survive if he does not start the next game but it is very good he is now fit and is obviously in contention. I like that a lot."


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