Liverpool are preparing to face their Premier League title rivals a little earlier than usual, as the Reds lock horns with Manchester City in the Community Shield this weekend, and a team news update has emerged which has put a dampener on the occasion from a Kopite perspective.
What’s the latest?
As per Sky Sports News, Jurgen Klopp has confirmed that Diogo Jota and Alisson Becker will not be available for selection on Saturday.
In a clip shared via Twitter, their presenter confirmed: “Breaking news from Liverpool, and it’s bad news ahead of the Community Shield which is this weekend because Jurgen Klopp has confirmed that the goalkeeper Alisson will miss the game, but he will be available for the Premier League opener.”
“Diogo Jota, by the way, he is still missing as well.”
Supporters will be gutted
Despite the Community Shield being treated more like a friendly than a competitive game, there is no doubt that Liverpool supporters will be gutted that they won’t see some of their stars in action and getting a good runout before the Premier League returns the following weekend.
With Alisson out of the squad, the usual next in line to play in goals is Caohimin Kelleher. However, the Irishman is injured, and according to the club’s official website, Kostas Tsmikas, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Calvin Ramsay also remain on the injury table with no confirmation on their returns as of yet.
With the two first-choice ‘keepers out of the team, it will now mean that third-choice Adrian will be entrusted with protecting Liverpool’s goal this weekend, something the Spaniard should be more than capable of doing, with 25 appearances for Klopp’s side in total.
There is no doubt that Jota, who scored 21 goals last season, will be a big miss in the team against Man City, but it would present the perfect opportunity for Darwin Nunez to get a feel of playing against his new club’s biggest competitors for domestic success during the upcoming campaign.
Liverpool have a number of new signings on board and the Community Shield will be a great opportunity to give Klopp a good look at where his squad is at when they come up against the current Premier League champions, to whom the Reds lost out on the title by just one point at the end of last season.
Of course it will be disappointing that there are so many injuries already accumulated ahead of the new season, but it gives those players a further rest to get back to fitness as soon as possible and hopefully in time for the Premier League’s return next weekend.
Nonetheless, Kopites may be gutted to hear of the body blows to Alisson and Jota in particular.