Liverpool face an anxious wait to determine the extent of Virgil van Dijk’s injury following the Merseyside derby.
The Dutchman was wiped out in the Everton box by Jordan Pickford’s reckless challenge.
The Reds were left incredulous that the ‘keeper was not sent off. Contrasting reports have claimed that VAR either deemed it wasn’t a foul, or that it was overlooked because the centre-back was in an offside position.
The game subsequently ended 2-2, with Jordan Henderson’s late winner chalked off for a dubious offside in the build-up.
The champions will be asking whether their rivals would have scored their two aerial efforts had their defensive talisman been on the pitch, but they will now have more pressing concerns about the rest of the season.
"He could have easily been sent off."— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) October 17, 2020
"I'm very surprised it's just been forgotten about?"
Jordan Pickford's challenge on Virgil van Dijk did not look good 😬
Should VAR have stepped in after this? pic.twitter.com/wTcW6CHcIf
Jurgen Klopp confirmed the early prognosis was “not good” as Van Dijk headed to hospital to undergo scans after the match.
However, the most alarming update came from Richard Keys on beIN Sports. The presenter claimed the 29-year-old had “done his ACL”, meaning he could be out “for 7-8 months”.
According to the Daily Mail, Liverpool are “furious” with that report.
That doesn’t necessarily mean Keys’ comments weren’t accurate, but either way there is anger inside the club at the player’s condition being speculated upon.
While Liverpool did not comment on how long Van Dijk will be out for, privately they do concede that he is set for a long stretch in the treatment room.
That will be a serious blow to their hopes of retaining the Premier League title. He has had a transformative impact on their fortunes since joining from Southampton in a £75m deal two years ago and Joe Gomez, in particular, has had a shaky start to the season.
It will be a busy few days for the club’s medical team as they also assess Thiago Alcantara.
The midfielder was quite brilliant at Goodison Park but was felled by a nasty challenge from Richarlison in injury time, the Brazilian earning his marching orders and subsequently apologising on social media.