Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson missed Ajax game after sustaining hamstring injury in Brighton draw; Brazilian set to be unavailable for the visit of Wolves on Sunday in the Premier League, and next week's trip to FC Midtjylland in the Champions League; Caoimhin Kelleher praised
Wednesday 2 December 2020 13:18, UK
Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson will be out for up to two weeks with a hamstring injury, Jurgen Klopp has confirmed.
Alisson missed Liverpool's Champions League tie against Ajax on Tuesday, with Caoimhin Kelleher starting in goal ahead of Adrian.
"It is not Covid," Klopp told BT Sport in his pre-match interview, when asked why Alisson was not in the Liverpool side.
"That is something we have to mention when it is not the case, and it is not the case. He told us after the game [against Brighton] he felt his hamstring in the 60th or 70th minute.
"A little one but enough for today and probably for another week, we will have to wait and see. I have never heard of a hamstring that is only four or five days so it will be 10 to 14 days, I think."
Alisson's injury adds to Klopp's long list of absentees as they continue to try to challenge both in Europe and the Premier League.
Trent Alexander-Arnold, Naby Keita and Xherdan Shaqiri remain unavailable, along with James Milner, who suffered a hamstring injury against Brighton on Saturday.
Meanwhile, Virgil van Dijk and Thiago Alcantara remain long-term injuries.
Despite Liverpool's injury problems, Klopp fielded a strong side against Ajax as they booked their spot in the last 16 with a 1-0 victory.
Klopp's decision to hand a Champions League debut to 22-year-old goalkeeper Kelleher ahead of established number two Adrian raised eyebrows but the goalkeeper was solid throughout and kept a clean sheet.
Kelleher was making only his fifth start for the club, the previous four being in domestic cup competitions with the last of those coming in the FA Cup against Shrewsbury Town last season.
Explaining his decision to pick Kelleher, Klopp said: "I really think Adrian has done a fantastic job for us, he kept a lot of clean sheets, played everywhere.
"But now we needed the natural football playing ability of Caoimhin Kelleher.
"He is a good shot-stopper as well. We made that decision but you never know how they are going to cope. I am really happy with how calm he was and how good he was.
"In the end, it is about keeping the ball out the net and he did that twice and he did that in an exceptional manner. He will either sleep really well tonight or not at all."
"I'm just working hard every day in training, preparing myself," Kelleher said. "I'm always thinking if a chance does come, I'll have to be ready for it.
"So that's why I work every day and thankfully all that work did pay off.
"That's all I can do. When I get my opportunity, I just need to take it. I think I've done well, so hopefully I can push on and if I get another opportunity, just take it again."
After the vote of confidence from Klopp, Kelleher received a pre-match message of support from both Alisson and Adrian and a huge bear hug from his manager at the final whistle.
"I didn't see Ali but I got a text before the game just to tell me good luck. Adrian was a really great support," he added.
"He told me, 'I'm with you 100 per cent and supporting you no matter what'. To get that from him was really kind of him.
"Of course, it was a nice moment for him (Klopp) to come to me and to get an embrace.
"He just said it's fully deserved, so it was a nice moment for me."
The match threw up more injury worries, with respective ankle and back problems for Andy Robertson and Jordan Henderson, and Klopp is keeping his fingers crossed for good news.
"Both played through so I would say we have now two days more than we had last week so I think [they are OK]," he said.
"Things like this show up the next day a little different but in the moment I am positive about it. That is a problem for the next few days but not tonight."
Sat Dec 5: Wolves (h)
Wed Dec 9: Midtjylland (a)
Sun Dec 13: Fulham (a) - live on Sky Sports
Wed Dec 16: Tottenham (h)
Sat Dec 19: Crystal Palace (a)
Sun Dec 27: West Brom (h) - live on Sky Sports