By 90Min
August 11, 2018

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has confirmed that the Reds will be without Dejan Lovren for theor opening game of the Premier League season against West Ham.

The 29-year-old featured in every game for Croatia as they reached the World Cup final this summer, eventually losing the final to France 4-2, off the back of playing 42 times for Liverpool in 2017/18.

Fred Lee/GettyImages

As a result, Klopp has confirmed that the centre back will be given an extended break following his summer exertions, ruling him out of the game against the Hammers.

Speaking ahead of the game, as quoted by the Liverpool Echo, he said: "We will see about the England boys and Dejan. They are all in different shape. Trent has had longer, which is good. Hendo is full of power but hasn’t been back long. It’s Hendo though, you always think about him. Dejan is unavailable for the weekend."

The news comes as a blow for Liverpool, as both Lovren and Virgil van Dijk looked to be forging a strong partnership at the back for the Reds, with only the two Manchester clubs and Tottenham conceding less than Klopp's side in the league last season.

Lovren's absence however opens the door for his replacement to stake a claim for the position, and with Ragnar Klavan and Joel Matip expected to miss the game, the opportunity could fall to Joe Gomez, who many expect to make the move to centre back at some point in his career. 

Malcolm Couzens/GettyImages

Speaking recently, after the pre-season win against Torino, to the Liverpool Echo, he said: "Joe I think is okay for the weekend. It was nothing serious, but tonight it was not possible (for him to play). He played on Saturday and now it's Tuesday. It's pretty tight."

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