As the international break comes to a close, there’s more bad news cropping up for Liverpool and England with reports coming in that Glen Johnson will be spending quite some time on the sidelines as he recovers from a high ankle sprain.
Original speculation had the fullback ruled out for up to 10 weeks and though the major media sources can’t seem to come to a consensus on an exact timeline for his return, some are now reporting a more conservative 5-6 weeks. Either way, he’s sure to be ruled out of the Three Lion’s decisive World Cup Qualifiers with Montenegro and Poland next month. Johnson, who injured his ankle in the Reds 1-0 win over Manchester United on September 1st, quickly withdrew from Roy Hodgson’s injury hit squad and remained on Merseyside as England rolled over Moldova at Wembley and ran out a scoreless draw in Ukraine.
While Johnson’s absence will be a blow for the national team, the News Desk is more interested in his absence for Liverpool as Brendan Rodgers looks to keep his perfect record alive when the Reds travel to the Liberty Stadium to face off against Swansea on Monday. After dispatching United, Liverpool won’t face another top four contender in the league until they make the trip to the Emirates Stadium to face Arsenal on November 2nd, but without another recognized right-back in the squad, Rodgers could be hard pressed to field a decent replacement in the meantime.
With Martin Kelly lacking match fitness and Andre Wisdom lacking experience, the absence of Johnson will be an early season blow for Liverpool’s top four ambitions. Depending on when he’s actually going to be fit again, there’s a good possibility that the fullback will also miss out on the Reds first Merseyside derby of the year when they take on Everton near the end of November.