Liverpool’s Matip ruled out for rest of season

London (AFP) – Liverpool’s injury woes mounted on Monday as defender Joel Matip was ruled out for the rest of the season after suffering an ankle ligament injury.

Matip was injured in a challenge with Tottenham striker Son Heung-min during Liverpool’s 3-1 win on Thursday.

The 29-year-old is the latest Liverpool defender to be hit by a serious fitness issue this season after Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez also sustained injuries from which they are yet to return.

“It was really unlucky because it was a brilliant challenge he made actually, he saved our life in that moment in the Tottenham game when he won the challenge against Son,” Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp told Liverpool’s website on Monday.

“He injured his ankle and played the game on and now is out for the season, so you can imagine how much he tried to stay on the pitch and tried to help us.

“But he will be ready for the start of the next pre-season and finally everything will be sorted.”

Matip’s injury is another blow to Liverpool’s hopes of retaining the Premier League title.

With makeshift centre-back Fabinho, usually deployed as a midfielder, also sidelined by injury, Klopp has had to use midfielder Jordan Henderson at centre-back alongside either Nat Phillips and Rhys Williams.

Klopp brought in defensive reinforcements ahead of Monday’s transfer deadline as he signed Preston centre-back Ben Davies in a permanent deal and landed Schalke’s Ozan Kabak on loan for the rest of this season.

Liverpool sit four points behind leaders Manchester City, who have a game in hand.

The Reds face Brighton on Wednesday before hosting City in a crucial clash on Sunday.

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