The hits just keep on coming with early reports coming in that Wales midfielder, and potential Lucas replacement, Joe Allen is set to miss Saturday’s meeting with Bournemouth in the FA Cup fourth round.
The Welsh midfielder can join his Brazilian counterpart on the treatment table along with recent absentee Glen Johnson and a whole motley crew of long term layoffs. The 23-year old, who was expected to start after making a return from injury in the 2-2 draw with Aston Villa just a week ago, suffered a knock in training and has not travelled with the squad to the South coast. Brendan Rodgers revealed that a number of first team regulars would be included in the squad to face the Championship side more out of necessity than preference, and with Allen now laid up, he’s quickly running out of healthy bodies.
Allen just returned after a groin injury picked up in the closing stages of Liverpool’s 2-1 loss to Chelsea over the festive period ruled him out for three weeks. With the Merseyside Derby looming large in three days time, it was hoped that the Wales man would be in the frame to deputize for Lucas after the Brazilian suffered medial ligament damage in last weekends clash with the Villains, but this latest injury not only casts doubt on his availability for that particular fixture, but our ability to navigate what’s sure to be a tricky encounter without a player to hold the midfield.
Brendan Rodgers has been experimenting with Reds captain Steven Gerrard in a more withdrawn, deep-lying playmaker role as of late, but with that particular position not playing to hos strengths as of yet, Aston Villa were able to easily exploit the massive gaps between our midfield and our defence last weekend. Everton, who are our closest chasers in the league and have been in fine form under new boss Roberto Martinez, will surely look to do the same…
Panic stations, anyone?