Virgil van Dijk would not be able to recover back in time for the Club World Cup final clash against Flamengo on Saturday, according to the Daily Mirror.
The Liverpool defend could not complete his full training session, even though he managed to show up for the training and do some fitness work.
Van Dijk was suffering from a minor illness and could not start during the semi-finals as well. Liverpool were able to qualify for the finals on Tuesday after beating the Monterrey side two goals to one nevertheless.
It’s highly unlikely that Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp will be ready to take a gamble on Van Dijk given his importance in the team with Liverpool in a serious position to win the English Premier League.
His absence would mean that James Milner will be moving in as a right-back and Jordan Henderson will be filling in Van Dijk’s shoes on the left.
Asked about the defender’s absence, Klopp told liverpoolfc.com:
It was an easy decision actually because he couldn’t train.
“Yes, he was yesterday on the [training] pitch for a couple of minutes until the media left [the session] and then, unfortunately, he had to leave as well.
“Not because of the media, just because he didn’t feel well. So yesterday [Tuesday] no training was possible, this morning [Wednesday] no training possible, so it was an easy decision – he couldn’t play.
“It was difficult for Hendo to deal with, but he did really good. We will see, I don’t know how quick he can recover. We will see.”
Liverpool are short of options as Joel Matip has not recovered from a long-standing knee issue, while Dejan Lovren is out until the New Year. Midfielder Fabinho, who can also play at the back, is also out with an ankle issue.