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Explanation provided for Joel Matip’s absence from Liverpool squad to take on Man United

Explanation provided for Joel Matip’s absence from Liverpool squad to take on Man United

United host Liverpool

The marquee fixture of the FA Cup’s 4th-round is set to take place at Old Trafford shortly.

The clash in question will see historic rivalries renewed, when Manchester United and Liverpool face off for a place in the competition’s last-16.

Adding further spice to the occasion is of course the fact that the two sides only met last weekend, in a Premier League showdown at Anfield.

On that occasion, an altogether forgetful 90 minutes eventually saw the spoils shared, in a drab 0-0 stalemate.

Explanation provided for Joel Matip’s absence from Liverpool squad to take on Man United

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND – JANUARY 17: Thiago of Liverpool challenges for the ball with Bruno Fernandes of Manchester United during the Premier League match between Liverpool and Manchester United at Anfield on January 17, 2021 in Liverpool, England. Sporting stadiums around England remain under strict restrictions due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in games being played behind closed doors. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

Since, though, it is today’s hosts who have enjoyed the better of things.

Manchester United moved back to the summit of the English top-flight on Wednesday, courtesy of a hard-fought 2-1 win over Scott Parker’s Fulham.

Liverpool, on the other hand, saw their struggles to find the net continue, en route to a shock 1-0 defeat at home to Burnley.

Matip missing

As such, ahead of the fast-approaching kick-off in Manchester, fans of this evening’s visitors were no doubt desperate to see Jurgen Klopp field as strong an XI as possible, as the Reds seek out a much-needed morale boosting victory.

It therefore likely came as a blow when, upon Liverpool’s starting line-up being revealed, the likes of Sadio Mane and Jordan Henderson, the latter of whom also missed his side’s defeat to Burnley during the week, were nowhere to be seen:

Another to have missed out on a starting berth at Old Trafford, meanwhile, is Joel Matip.

Cameroonian stopper Matip only recently returned from a spell on the sidelines, with his complete omission from Liverpool’s squad this evening, in turn, having led to immediate concerns regarding the possibility of a recurrence.

As confirmed by the reliable James Pearce, however, Jurgen Klopp and co. are simply attempting to manage the 29-year-old’s game-time, amid the hectic fixture list at present.

To be clear, Matip has not picked up another injury.


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This article was edited by Josh Barker.

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Premier League table
# Team MP D P
1 Manchester City FC 27 39 65
2 Leicester City FC 28 16 53
3 Manchester United FC 27 21 51
4 Chelsea FC 27 17 47
5 Everton FC 26 6 46
6 West Ham United FC 26 9 45
7 Liverpool FC 28 11 43
8 Tottenham Hotspur FC 26 15 42
9 Aston Villa FC 26 11 40
10 Arsenal FC 27 7 38
11 Leeds United 26 -1 35
12 Wolverhampton Wanderers FC 28 -9 35
13 Crystal Palace FC 27 -14 34
14 Southampton FC 27 -11 33
15 Burnley FC 28 -16 30
16 Newcastle United FC 27 -17 27
17 Brighton & Hove Albion FC 27 -8 26
18 Fulham FC 28 -11 26
19 West Bromwich Albion 28 -36 18
20 Sheffield United FC 28 -29 14
Premier League 20/21
Player Team Goals
Salah, Mohamed Liverpool FC 17
Kane, Harry Tottenham Hotspur FC 16
Fernandes, Bruno Manchester United FC 16
Son, Heung Min Tottenham Hotspur FC 13
Bamford, Patrick Leeds United 13
Calvert-Lewin, Dominic Everton FC 13
Vardy, Jamie Leicester City FC 12
Gundogan, Ilkay Manchester City FC 11
Wilson, Callum Newcastle United FC 10
Watkins, Ollie Aston Villa FC 10
Rashford, Marcus Manchester United FC 9
Sterling, Raheem Manchester City FC 9
Barnes, Harvey Leicester City FC 9
Zaha, Wilfried Crystal Palace FC 9
Lacazette, Alexandre Arsenal FC 9
Aubameyang, Pierre-Emerick Arsenal FC 9
Maddison, James Leicester City FC 8
Ings, Danny Southampton FC 8
Soucek, Tomas West Ham United FC 8
Mahrez, Riyad Manchester City FC 7