Virgil van Dijk’s knee injury could be worse than first feared, according to David Ornstein of the Athletic.
The Dutch defender was on the receiving end of a crude challenge from Everton’s goalkeeper early on in the 2-2 draw on Saturday. However, Everton were spared the consequences of such a challenge – potentially a red card for the keeper and a penalty – as the Liverpool defender was adjudged to be marginally offside by the VAR officials at Stockley Park. The FA later added that the England goalkeeper would not be punished retrospectively.
Liverpool gave no time frame for the defender’s recuperation when announcing that he would undergo surgery but an ACL injury can require six to eight month rehabilitation. However, the latest #AskOrnstein episode reveals that the defender may have suffered further damage around the knee, thus extending his absence.
“In terms of the injury itself, it is my understanding that – and this is not official – the damage to Virgil van Dijk’s knee is perhaps worse than initially feared, and it extends beyond the ACL,” began Ornstein.
It would indicate that we wont see Van Dijk on a pitch until next season.
"We don’t know when he will undergo surgery – that is a decision for Van Dijk and those around him.”
The loss of Van Dijk has left Liverpool with Joe Gomez, Joel Matip and Fabinho as options to cover the Dutchman’s absence.
Liverpool perceived that a number of decisions went against them during the 235th meeting of the two sides – including a disallowed, late Jordan Henderson goal – and had written to the Premier League asking them to investigate the application of VAR during the match.
Parker: Everton would have accepted three-game ban
Paurl Parker told Eurosport: "They should have just given him a three-game ban, violent conduct. At least that. Some Liverpool fans want him put in the Tower of London, but still they should have done something. If they'd have given him three games, or at least brought him in and talked to him, then no one is really going to complain. Everton would not have complained, and that might have done them a favour by the way.
That's totally wrong, so if anything like that happens again the FA can't do anything, because people will go back and use that as an example. Not like people will start jumping at others with two feet, but we know if that's going to happen to any outfield player on the pitch then it would have been a different scenario. The player would have been sent off, but being an offside VAR somehow did not look at that incident.
"They've got to say something about it. Although they've made their mind up about this situation, if they can move the goalposts now then do it before anything like this happens again. Common sense must apply, although for Van Dijk and Liverpool it's kind of like having a burglar alarm after you've been robbed."