In a recent interview before Liverpool’s win over Chelsea in the UEFA Super Cup (via the Liverpool Echo), Jurgen Klopp revealed why the Croatia international was absent when he said, “Why isn’t he here? It’s because he is ill.”
According to a recent report by Football.London, Liverpool centre-back Dejan Lovren is back in training after missing out on the last two matches against Chelsea and Southampton respectively due to illness. The same source has claimed that the Reds defensive ace is in contention to be a part of Klopp’s match-day squad for Arsenal’s visit to Anfield this weekend.
Lovren’s Fruitful Career At Merseyside
Lovren has been an integral member of the Liverpool squad over the past few years. He helped the Merseyside outfit win the UEFA Champions League last season, so a lot will be expected of him when he makes a full return to the Reds’ starting lineup in the coming weeks.
The Croat centre-half featured in a total of 18 matches for the European champions in the last term, scoring one goal while grabbing one assist across all competitions. Injuries ravaged the 30-year-old in the previous campaign which is a cause for concern as Klopp would need to utilise his full squad of players to compete on all fronts this term.
On the defensive end, Lovren made an average of 1.2 tackles, 0.8 interceptions and 3.9 clearances per game during the 2018-19 Premier League campaign (stats via whoscored). He has represented Croatia in 53 international matches while scoring two goals for his nation in the process.
Lovren made a slow start to his Liverpool career but has gradually transformed himself into a commanding centre-half at the back for Klopp’s team. He is a very reliable squad player who can come in and do a decent job alongside Virgil Van Dijk. However, the Croat talent has lost his first-team privileges to Joel Matip and Joe Gomez, so he might have to wait for his opportunity before he can make an impact on the field.
Lovren’s Return From Illness: Huge Boost For The Reds?
Having Lovren back for the crucial, top of the table encounter versus Arsenal will be a massive boost for Klopp and his side’s chances of securing a 12th successive victory in the English top-flight this weekend. With Joe Gomez, Joel Matip and Virgil Van Dijk also available for selection, Klopp would have a welcome selection headache ahead of this Saturday’s clash against Unai Emery’s men.
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