The Premier League heavyweights, Liverpool, aren’t exactly enjoying their time under the British sun lately.
Two draws and a gut-wrenching defeat to arch nemesis, Manchester United, have left them in the bottom half of the table with fans now waking up to a bleak future that might befall the club.
The reason you ask? It’s right in the face, laughing at every Reds fan.
A long string of injuries has paralyzed Liverpool’s midfield, which once operated at the zenith of their powers.
And it’s not only restricted to midfield, this plague of injuries has also taken players like Ibrahima Konate and Joel Matip in defence while Diogo Jota up front has been missing from action.
However, in midfield, the destruction is incomprehensible.
Thiago Alcântara, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, and Curtis Jones have deepened the struggle of Jurgen Klopp to field a competitive team.
Jordan Henderson and James Milner are simply not in line to play at a high tempo anymore. Adding to these woes is the injury specialist, Naby Keita, whose stock value rises and falls with every season.
Klopp has been extremely patient with the Guinean international, but Keita’s consistency to stay off the field due to one injury or another has taken a toll on the depth of Liverpool’s midfield squad.
But it’s not why he sustains injuries so quickly, but also the ‘how’ which seems to get ridiculous every season. However, Klopp always has an explanation that may or may not be satisfactory.
You know he just, ‘Fell out of nothing’
Klopp always has the weirdest excuses. Be it after a loss or the tight schedule, but speaking on Keita’s absence after the game against United, the German manager specified that the injury to Keita is genuine that needs further assessment.
There was a layer of secrecy that Klopp maintained about the Guinean without spilling beans on the true nature of the injury. However, before the game at Old Trafford, Klopp revealed to reporters that Keita is ill. Which is it? No one knows yet.
Kicked the Ground too hard?
In an EFL game against Norwich City the previous season, Keita was substituted after the first half.
When asked about this substitution in the post-match conference, Klopp revealed the Guinean kicked the ground in the first half, suffering some foot and ankle pain with assessments yet to confirm if there was ligament damage.
This was seriously a one-of-a-kind injury that left the fans fuming.
In the midst of a war
Back in September 2021, Keita was on international duty back in his home nation.
In an unfortunate turn of events, the Guinean football team was caught up in an attempted coup when some soldiers detained the President of Guinea, Alpha Conde.
Liverpool worked hard to get him out, but when he reached Merseyside, Klopp allowed him to recover from the trauma of almost getting captured and didn’t start him in the upcoming game in the Premier League.
Even though Klopp’s action was admirable, it sidelined Keita for yet another game for the Reds.
An uncomfortable plane ride
The most bizarre reason for Keita to miss a game came four years ago when he was new to the club.
Liverpool was on their way to the US for pre-season formalities when the newly arrived Keita complained of a stiff neck after an eight-hour-long plane ride.
The Guinean missed the clash against Manchester United and Klopp blamed the air conditioning on the plane for Keita’s absence.
At this hour, Liverpool needs Keita at full strength devoid of any injury, but his track record suggests otherwise.
If the injury problem continues to persist, he might be sold off or, even worse, cannot reach his potential and be termed as someone who could have been great.
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