Liverpool sweating on Van Dijk as defender misses training ahead of Barcelona clash with Salah and Firmino already ruled out

LIVERPOOL are sweating on the fitness of star defender Virgil van Dijk ahead of their Champions League showdown with Barcelona.

Jurgen Klopp is already without Mo Salah and Roberto Firmino as the Reds attempt to overturn a 3-0 deficit in the semi-final second-leg.

Now he has two fresh injury worries going into the game – including the PFA Player of the Year.

Van Dijk, 27, and midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, 25, both trained on their own at Melwood today away from their team-mates.

The Daily Mail report the pair were “undergoing specific, tailored sessions in keeping with managing their workloads at this stage of the season”.

But The Mirror state Van Dijk has been troubled by a foot issue over recent weeks and Oxlade-Chamberlain felt a muscle pull while warming up at the victory over Newcastle on Saturday.

The potential loss of Van Dijk would be a huge blow to Klopp.

He has made 54 appearances for club and country with his displays proving key to the Reds' march through the Champions League and Premier League title challenge.

Meanwhile, Oxlade-Chamberlain only made his first appearance in over a year late last month following a serious knee injury.

Salah and Firmino are sidelined through concussion and a muscle tear, while midfielder Naby Keita is ruled out with a groin problem.

Despite the injuries, Klopp has still pledged to go all-out in his quest to reach a second-successive European final.

Speaking in his pre-match press conference, Klopp said: “The approach we will take is that we try to win the game, if that makes sense.

“But you cannot play against Barcelona and tell the world ‘Watch this’ and after 10 minutes we are level.

“You cannot win 3-0 in the first five minutes, even if you are 3-0 up, you haven't won it. We have to be ready to try for 95 minutes or even more.”


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And discussing the loss of his key duo Salah and Firmino, he added: “He (Salah) feels OK but that is not good enough from a medical point of view. He is desperate, but we cannot do it.

“Two of the world's best strikers are not available tomorrow and we have to score four goals to go through in 90 minutes.

“It doesn't make life easier but as long as we have 11 players on the pitch, we will try.”

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