The Reds boss believes that a Dutch midfielder, along with his fellow victim Joe Gomez, will be ready to start against the Canaries in the long run
Jurgen Klopp brought a confidence-boosting message to Liverpool fans ahead of the opening of the club’s Premier League season against Norwich, and the Reds boss revealed that Virgil van Dijk is ready to start.
A commanding Dutch midfielder has yet to gain a competitive appearance for club or country as he suffered a knee ligament injury on 17 October 2020 in a derby match in Merseyside with Everton.
It was a long road back to full fitness for a talismanic figure at Anfield, but pre-season outings helped him rediscover the sharpness of the game, and it could be that he – along with his fellow victim Joe Gomez figures from Saturday at Carrow Road.
What was said?
Asked by the Reds’ Official Website on the question of whether Van Dijk and Gomez are ready for top flight competition, Klopp said: ‘I think so, it seems like [they are available to start]. But how about these kinds of things, we do not have to rush anything in this section.
‘We just have to make a decision about who will start, who will come, things like that, and if I think they’re 90 minutes ready, they’re ready to start.
‘If I think we have to take them out earlier, then it does not make sense, because the middle half is not really a position where you want to change during a game, and we will see.
“But both look very good. An intense season is coming. We will see how we decide that.”
Does Klopp know his best team?
Continuity was key for Liverpool as they secured memorable victories in the Champions League and Premier League in 2019 and 2020.
A succession of untimely bumps provided a humble drop of grace for the Reds last season, but they are back at full strength – with Andy Robertson, the only regular appetizer currently sitting on the treatment table.
During the pre-season, Klopp got a welcome headache a team that was relatively quiet on the transfer front this summer in friendly appointments with Athletic Club and Osasuna in back-to-back shows that they have enough depth at their disposal.
Klopp added if the outings offer him a selection post: “Do it, do it. It actually sends a good message: this is the way we have to play, this is the way you have to perform. If you are in the team which is actually the lowest allowed level, and that’s what we should try to find out now.
“[Tuesday] was a holiday, Wednesday and [Thursday] sessions, and then Friday the [matchday] -1, so there are some decisions to be made, but these decisions are for one game, not for the season. So it’s not much of a headache, to be honest. ”