Liverpool’s victory over West Ham United on Sunday continued their recent resurgence as Jurgen Klopp continues to battle against a hefty injury crisis.
Mohamed Salah scored two lovely goals, the second of which was reminiscent of Liverpool’s counter-attacking best, while two deadline day signings offer hope that the centre-back issues can be solved.
The news that Joel Matip will miss the remainder of the campaign with an ankle injury was disheartening, but the arrivals of Ozan Kabak and Ben Davies offer hope at the position.
Meanwhile, Klopp will be buoyed by the improvements of his attack, especially as Roberto Firmino begins to find his form.
Here is your Liverpool morning digest for Wednesday, February 3.
Kabak does not need registering
New signing Kabak does not need to be registered for the Premier League.
Liverpool signed Kabak on a six-month loan on deadline day as cover for Matip, Virgil van Dijk, and Joe Gomez, all of whom will miss extended time with their respective injuries.
The Reds will have an £18million option-to-buy clause included in the deal, which can be activated in the summer, while Kabak could be in line to feature from the off, with Jordan Henderson and Fabinho moonlighting at centre-half in recent weeks.
Liverpool named a 24-man squad for the first half of the campaign, with Van Dijk dropping out after suffering a serious knee injury in the Merseyside Derby against Everton.
Kabak, however, does not need to be included in the Premier League squad for the second half of the season because he is only 20 years old.
Davies, the other new arrival, will need to be included in the squad, though Takumi Minamino’s loan departure opens up a spot.
Diogo Jota and Naby Keita are expected to return before the end of the season and will subsequently be included in the squad.
Liverpool could name a 21-man or 25-man squad, with the respective inclusions of Matip and Van Dijk offering a hint as to whether they could potentially feature again this year.
Mourinho signing offers Davies hope
Eyebrows were raised when Liverpool targeted Preston defender Davies in the closing days of the January window.
Liverpool’s need for a centre-back was well-known, and with options limited given their financial situation and the deadline looming, they had to drop into the Championship.
Davies, who had six months remaining on his Preston contract, was expected to sign a pre-contract agreement with Celtic. However, once Liverpool entered the equation, everything changed, and a £2m transfer was swiftly completed.
But if people had doubts on Davies’ ability to step up to the Premier League, they need to only look at Jose Mourinho, Spurs, and Joe Rodon for encouragement.
Rodon made the step up from Swansea City, and Mourinho has been extremely pleased with the young centre-back.
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“He played well, he did many things well, a couple of things not so well, but he’s a player who of course was playing in the Championship,” Mourinho said after Tottenham’s victory over Sheffield United earlier this month.
“A young guy, he has to learn. One thing is you want a central defender and you pay £70 million for one of the top centre-backs in Europe, then you resolve your problems.
“Another thing is to get a good player, but a player who needs to develop. With Joe, that’s the situation. He has to learn, he has to make mistakes, he has to play, he has to not play. We have to try to give him conditions to perform. but potentially, potentially of course, he’s a good player who can become much much better.”