Liverpool have confirmed on their official website that Joel Matip will undergo surgery after sustaining a fractured collarbone during the Merseyside club’s 1-0 victory against Napoli in the UEFA Champions League on Tuesday night. The Cameroonian centre-back landed awkwardly when attempting to make an aerial challenge in the dying embers of the contest.
He was soon substituted as a precautional measure and was replaced by Dejan Lovren. Jurgen Klopp’s side hung on in injury-time to secure a deserved place in the round of 16 of the competition. Matip put in one of his best performances in a Liverpool shirt in that match so he could be a big miss at Anfield in the coming weeks.
The Reds have also revealed on their website that the centre-back could be sidelined for up to six weeks depending on how he responds to his treatment and rehabilitation programmes. Klopp has now got a mini-injury crisis on his hands as both Joe Gomez and Joel Matip faces a lengthy spell on the sidelines. Hence, the Merseyside outfit should look to bring in a new defender who can ease some of their injury worries at the back.
Here are three centre-backs Liverpool can consider signing when the transfer window reopens in January.
The Brazilian defender could be easily persuaded to switch clubs as Monaco are currently struggling and are in real danger of being relegated from the Ligue 1 following a poor start to life under Thierry Henry. The 26-year-old has had a below-par campaign so far, but he has still managed to be a regular presence at the back for the French outfit.
Jemerson had a fantastic season last term when he led Monaco to a second-place finish in the French top-flight, but the centre-back needs a change if he wants to reignite his career. So playing as a sporadic option under Klopp could appeal to him.
The English defender has been a substantial presence at the back for Burnley and has already put in some commanding performances during this campaign.
The 26-year-old has made 18 appearances for the Clarets this season and has three goals to his name in all competitions. He will be a perfect partner for Virgil Van Dijk and would give the likes of Lovren, Matip and Gomez a run for their money in the battle to secure a regular starting berth under Klopp.
Sadio Mane’s international teammate, Salif Sane has been a revelation while playing for Schalke in the Bundesliga this season. The 28-year-old has impressed a lot of people with some dominant displays at the back for Domenico Tedesco’s side. The Senegalese will be an excellent fit for Liverpool as he is a powerhouse in defence and can read any sign of danger early on and nip them in the bud.