Jurgen Klopp admits injury setback to Liverpool attacker was a ‘proper smash in the face’

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Liverpool head coach Jurgen Klopp has admitted that Luis Diaz’s recent injury setback was like a “proper smash in the face” to him and the player.

The Reds are gearing up for their first Premier League game after the World Cup break on Boxing Day against Aston Villa.

A couple of days earlier, they have the small matter of a game in the Carabao Cup round of 16 against Manchester City.

Liverpool’s squad are currently in the United Arab Emirates for a training camp ahead of their return to league and cup action later this month.

They faced Lyon in a friendly on Sunday. Fabio Carvalho scored early one to make 1-0 to Klopp’s side. Alexandre Lacazette later netted a brace as the French side eventually ran out 3-1 winners.

Liverpool have another friendly next Friday as they come up against Serie A champions AC Milan.

Klopp suggested after his side’s defeat that they will use this game as one to “learn from”.

“The start of the game from us was really good, I liked a lot of parts in the first half. I saw what we were working on in the training sessions so far,” Klopp said in a press conference.

“Really aggressive, played well, good connected, could have scored a second one and then we concede the equaliser with a misunderstanding between [Andy Robertson] and Caoimhin [Kelleher]. Not cool – but can happen, obviously.

“Second half we had to change a lot [and] with all the things we did in training it was clear 60 minutes is the maximum what anybody can play.

“And then we were really young and not well organised anymore. Let me say it like this, when we lost the ball then it ended up in front of our goal.

“Every ball we lost was a counter-attack and was pretty much a big chance, that’s of course not how it should look, but that’s a learning curve and we will use this game to learn from.”

Harvey Elliott was brought off before half-time against Lyon and Klopp revealed after the game that the midfielder “got a knock”.

“Harvey got a knock before we scored. Harvey got a knock. But I think we were lucky,” Klopp revealed.

“He looks fine now but he feels it, that’s normal, there was contact. But I hope we were lucky in that moment.”

On Luis Diaz, Klopp added: “Yeah, he was not in the best possible place. It’s clear it’s a big disappointment for all of us, for him as well.

“It was a non-situation in training, honestly – nothing, felt something. [He] didn’t feel a lot the next day but we wanted to be really cautious and said, ‘OK, come on, let’s have a look’.

“Yeah, then the news came and it was a proper smash in the face. But that’s it now.”

READ MORE: Every Premier League team’s player of the World Cup features a couple of Argentinian heroes


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