Second knee injury nightmare rules Ings out for the season
Liverpool striker Danny Ings has suffered a heart-breaking knee injury that has ruled him out for the rest of the season, having missed the bulk of the 2015/'16 campaign through a separate serious knee injury.
Ings missed seven months last season after he tore his cruciate ligament in October 2015, and despite making his return to the squad in May last year, the striker has been attempting to regain full fitness having made just two appearances in the EFL Cup.
The second of those outings saw the former Burnley forward feel pain in his knee during the 2-1 win over Tottenham last week, and scans have revealed that he has suffered serious cartilage damage. The injury is completely different to the ligament damage he suffered last year, and it is also in his right knee this time around, having injured his left knee in October 2015.
Ings will see a specialist in London this weekend ahead of an operation on the damaged cartilage that looks set to rule him out for at least seven months, which will keep him sidelined for the remainder of the season and likely affect his recovery for the 2016/'17 campaign.
Liverpool confirmed the news with a statement which revealed that Ings will miss "a period of between seven and nine months", with the operation set to be performed today. It added that Ings suffered the damage when attempting make a challenge on Spurs defender Kevin Wimmer late in the match.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp admitted that the news was a huge blow to not only his plans for the season, but also to the morale of the squad given that Ings is a well-liked character at Anfield.
"To say we are gutted would be an understatement; he is such a great boy and has worked so hard that he deserves better luck than this," Klopp stated. "It is typical of Danny's personality, on and off the pitch, that he picked up this injury to his knee when courageously trying to win the ball back for his team by making a tackle. But it is this same personality that means he will come back as good and as strong from this latest setback as he has done in the past.
"The likely lay-off is anywhere from between seven to nine months. He is mentally strong, physically strong and will have the best treatment and rehab possible."
The loss of Ings leaves Klopp with three available strikers, with first choice Roberto Firmino ahead of Daniel Sturridge and Divock Origi in the pecking order. (© Independent News Service)