Sunday 18 August 2019

Liverpool could turn to veteran goalkeeper to relieve crisis as Alisson faces spell on the sidelines

Safety net: Andy Lonergan (centre) could be offered a short-term deal to ease Liverpool’s goalkeeper issues. Photo: Action Foto Sport/NurPhoto via Getty Images
Safety net: Andy Lonergan (centre) could be offered a short-term deal to ease Liverpool’s goalkeeper issues. Photo: Action Foto Sport/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Chris Bascombe

Liverpool might turn to 35-year-old goalkeeper Andy Lonergan to solve their goalkeeping crisis in the wake of Alisson Becker's injury.

Lonergan, who was released by Middlesbrough at the end of last season, has returned to training at Melwood after assisting Liverpool in pre-season.

Now he is being considered for a short-term deal while Alisson recovers from a calf injury.

Liverpool will be able to sign Lonergan despite the transfer window closing last week because he is not registered with any other club. That makes him a potential alternative as back-up to Adrian, who is expected to step in for the next four to eight weeks.

Alisson is waiting on the results of a scan after being injured in the opening-night win over Norwich City. A full diagnosis is required, but he will certainly be missing for the next month, starting with Wednesday's Uefa Super Cup final.

Further assessments are to be made, with medical staff establishing if any damage was done to the Achilles tendon as well as the calf.

Alisson hurt himself when he slipped taking a goal-kick during the 4-1 victory at Anfield and was substituted in the 36th minute.

Liverpool's problems are accentuated by having no fit back-up goalkeepers left after the sale of Simon Mignolet to Club Brugge last week.

Irish goalkeeper Caoimhin Kelleher - who will be the third choice this season - has just returned to training in recent days as he recovers from a broken wrist. Lonergan got game time during the pre-season tour of the United States while Alisson enjoyed a break after the Copa America.

Liverpool will decide in the next 48 hours whether to offer Lonergan a deal, thus enabling him to travel with the squad to Istanbul. They fly to Turkey tomorrow ahead of the meeting with Chelsea at the Besiktas Stadium.

Manager Jurgen Klopp says he has confidence Adrian will provide the necessary quality. "He is a very confident guy. He didn't want to sit only on the bench for the next couple of years," said Klopp.

"He made himself ready, but in a situation like this you want someone who played the league, is ready, a calm guy, good with his feet which is really important for us. But we don't want a situation where [only] one goalie is fit." (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Telegraph.co.uk

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