The marquee fixture of the Premier League weekend is of course currently being played out at Anfield.
The clash sees Liverpool and Manchester United going head to head, in a top-of-the-table showdown.
Ahead of kick-off, it was the latter who held the advantage in the race for the title, with Klopp’s champions having slipped into an uncharacteristic slump over the last couple of weeks.
Since downing Crystal Palace by 7 goals to nil at Selhurst Park, Liverpool had since managed to secure just two points from an available nine.
As things stand late in the first-half at Anfield, meanwhile, the scoreline remains locked at 0-0.
It is Liverpool, though, who will no doubt be the happier of the two sides, having, for the most part, dominated their title rivals.
The Reds’ early dominance comes despite Jurgen Klopp having been left with little choice but to field a weakened XI this evening.
Upon the hosts’ line-up being announced an hour prior to kick-off, it quickly became clear that Joel Matip, who had been viewed as a major doubt to feature versus United, would play no part in the action on Merseyside.
In turn, with Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez of course sidelined long-term, the pairing of Fabinho and Jordan Henderson were tasked with filling the hole at the heart of Liverpool’s backline:
🔴 TEAM NEWS 🔴
The Reds to face @ManUtd 👊
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) January 17, 2021
Speaking prior to the action getting underway at Anfield, in turn, Jurgen Klopp was inevitably drawn on the latest on Matip’s wellbeing.
And, though the stopper was deemed unfit to take part this evening, the news proved largely positive, with Klopp having confirmed that Matip is in line to return to full training on Monday:
‘Joel could take part in some parts of the sessions on Friday but now it is Sunday so that is obviously not enough.’
‘From tomorrow he will train normally.’
The former Schalke man therefore looks set to be in contention to feature when the Reds return to action, versus Burnley on Thursday night:
Klopp explained his absencehttps://t.co/zc5dtFlOr6
— Liverpool FC News (@LivEchoLFC) January 17, 2021
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