Carabao Cup Semi-Final: Liverpool’s Against Arsenal Threatened By Reds’ Covid Outbreak

The Reds have now been forced to close their training ground, while assistant head coach Pep Lijnders has also tested positive.

Thursday’s meeting between Liverpool and Arsenal is under threat due to further suspected Covid-19 cases among the Reds’ squad.

Liverpool were without manager Jurgen Klopp for their clash with Chelsea over the weekend due to a suspected positive test, with assistant head coach Pep Lijnders having now also tested positive for coronavirus.

The Reds’ Carabao Cup clash with Arsenal is in severe doubt as they continue to deal with several Covid-enforced absences, with the club’s training ground having been closed down in an attempt to stop further cases of the virus.

After Liverpool’s Tuesday training session was cancelled due to the club’s struggles with coronavirus, the Reds confirmed on Wednesday that their AXA Training Centre had been temporarily closed.

Klopp’s side were without nine first-team players against Chelsea last time out, with only two, Andrew Robertson and Takumi Minamino, having any chance of returning against Arsenal in the Carabao Cup.

Liverpool are also now without Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Naby Keita, as all three have left to join up with their respective national teams for the African Cup of Nations.

With Klopp having been unable to be present in the dugout for the Reds’ draw with Chelsea, it has now been confirmed that assistant head coach Lijnders, who stepped in at Stamford Bridge, has also tested positive for Covid-19.

On Tuesday evening, the Reds confirmed that they have formally requested the match be postponed.

An official statement reads: “Liverpool Football Club can confirm an application has been submitted for the postponement of Thursday’s Carabao Cup semi-final, first-leg tie with Arsenal due to an escalating number of suspected positive COVID-19 cases and player availability.

“The Reds have formally requested to the EFL that the fixture is rescheduled after further suspected positive tests were registered among players and staff, allied to other factors impacting selection, including illness and injury.

“In response, the club halted preparations at the AXA Training Centre, meaning Tuesday’s first-team training session was cancelled.

“Among the considerations which led to today’s application to the EFL is the need for travelling supporters to be given as much notice as possible of any potential postponement.

 “With no prospect of the current situation improving ahead of Thursday’s fixture and the potential for it to worsen, the club considers it both prudent and reasonable to ask for the fixture to be rescheduled.

“Liverpool FC will offer a further update on the application process, as well as the resumption of training, in due course.”

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