Jurgen Klopp will miss Liverpool’s trip to Stamford Bridge on Sunday after returning a suspected positive COVID-19 result in addition to the three players already missing the fixture.
The German coach stopped short of naming those players in his press conference on Friday, but Chelsea’s foes have only just seen the return of Virgil van Dijk, who returned in defeat to Leicester, after he returned a positive test, while Fabinho has missed gametime too.
Klopp played down the suggestion of postponing the game at that time with Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane set to fly off for the Africa Cup of Nations following the clash.
The former Borussia Dortmund boss said: “I’m not able to say who [has tested positive] but it will be pretty clear on the teamsheet the day after tomorrow.
“Postponement? Not yet but we’ve never had this outbreak. It’s more every day another one, a few staff. It feels like a lottery.”
Some Liverpool fans believe Chelsea vs Liverpool should be postponed
It remains to be seen how Liverpool’s squad will be impacted ahead of the clash, but the Anfield side are planning for the game to go ahead with Pepijn Linders in charge.
“Jürgen Klopp will miss Liverpool’s Premier League meeting with Chelsea on Sunday after returning a suspected positive COVID-19 test result,” a statement read on the club’s official website.
“The Reds manager, who reported mild symptoms ahead of the fixture, is now isolating.
“Assistant manager Pepijn Lijnders will therefore lead the team for the 4.30pm GMT kick-off at Stamford Bridge.
“Testing of the entire first-team set-up has revealed no further positive cases within the playing squad in addition to the three confirmed by Klopp on Friday.
Some Liverpool fans believe Jurgen Klopp being ruled out in combination with their other positive tests means Chelsea vs Liverpool should be cancelled
“Three backroom staff members have returned suspected positive results, however.”
The news has left a number of Liverpool fans wary, however, with many calling for the game to be postponed.
Elsewhere in the Premier League, Leicester vs Norwich and Southampton vs Newcastle have already been called off this weekend.
Liverpool have only seen one match postponed in their calendar so far, the home clash against Leeds that was set for Boxing Day, while Chelsea are yet to have their schedule interrupted.
The Blues are not without absences of their own with Reece James and Ben Chilwell ruled out and Ruben Loftus-Cheek yet to make his return.
Timo Werner and Thiago Silva have both returned to training but the former was said to be ‘not good’ as he returns from a COVID-19 diagnosis of his own.