Fred sets ambitious target for Manchester United’s season ahead of Chelsea clash He's feeling confident about the campaign.
Liverpool fear the worst as van Dijk leaves hospital on crutches amid ACL rupture claims/Thiago also undergoes scan
Updates on the wellbeing of a pair of Liverpool stars have been forthcoming online this evening, following today’s physical Merseyside Derby clash.
Jurgen Klopp’s men made the trip to Goodison Park earlier today, for their first outing following the international break.
The Reds headed into proceedings in search of a bounce-back result, on the back of a shock 7-2 drubbing at the hands of Aston Villa last time out.
Everton, on the other hand, were aiming to keep their perfect start to the season alive, having notched wins in their opening 7 fixtures, a run which left the Toffees sitting pretty atop the Premier League table.
When all was said and done on Merseyside, though, both sides were forced to make do with a point, following an action-packed, drama-filled 90 minutes.
It was who Liverpool took the lead in the clash, when Sadio Mane lashed home with just 3 minutes on the clock.
Everton, though, soon pulled level, courtesy of Michael Keane’s thumping header.
The visitors restored their advantage 20 minutes from time, when Mohamed Salah did brilliantly to readjust his feet, before aiming a pinpoint left-footed effort into the bottom-left of the Toffees’ goal.
100 – Mohamed Salah has scored his 100th goal in his 159th game for @LFC in all competitions – only Roger Hunt and Jack Parkinson have reached the milestone in fewer appearances for the Reds. Centurion. #EVELIV pic.twitter.com/qXKN4yWBGH
OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) October 17, 2020
Ancelotti’s men, however, soon fought back once more, as the in-form Dominic Calvert-Lewin nodded home to set up a tense final 9 minutes.
Liverpool did appear to have bagged an all-important winner deep into injury-time, but, following a lengthy VAR check, Jordan Henderson’s finish was eventually ruled out for offside.
Whilst today’s result, in the end, no doubt proved disappointing from a Liverpool perspective, even more concerning was an injury picked by one of the club’s star men.
With just 6 minutes on the clock, Virgil van Dijk was forced off, with what looked a potentially serious knee issue.
This came after the Dutch stalwart was challenged in frankly horrendous fashion by Jordan Pickford, who somehow managed to escape from the incident without as much as a booking:
“He could have easily been sent off.”
“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
Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) October 17, 2020
The hours since the clash have seen a whole host of claims spread regarding van Dijk’s wellbeing, with the most worrying having come from beIN Sports.
The broadcaster were quick to suggest that Liverpool’s defensive lynchpin has suffered an ACL rupture, an injury which would likely rule him out for the remainder of the season:
DaveOCKOP (@DaveOCKOP) October 17, 2020
Following closely on the back of such claims, meanwhile, has been confirmation that van Dijk did indeed depart hospital on crutches this evening, after scans were carried out on the former Southampton man’s knee.
As per the reliable Ian Doyle, this comes with those at Anfield ‘fearing the defender faces a lengthy spell on the sidelines.’
Elsewhere, Reds summer addition Thiago Alcantara has also undergone a scan, after the Spaniard was the victim of a 2nd Everton horror challenge late on at Goodison Park, which eventually resulted in Richarlison being given his marching orders:
‘Thiago played the remaining minutes but complained of discomfort after the final whistle, and has reportedly suffered swelling to his right knee.’
Here is the latest on Van Dijk and Thiago ⤵️ https://t.co/CG9puKoAJb
Liverpool FC News (@LivEchoLFC) October 17, 2020
Liverpool now face an anxious wait for updates on the fitness of their two key performers.