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Analysis - Klopp handed Van Dijk hope as Thiago presents problem

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Coming on for the second half against 10 men at Chelsea is one thing.

A full 90 minutes in the rough and tumble of the Merseyside derby is quite another.

Even on such early evidence, Liverpool cannot afford to be without him for too long.

If Thiago Alcantara didn’t really understand English football, he does now.

But for Thiago, it was just another game, just another opportunity to show why Liverpool’s capture of the Spain international last month continues to be regarded such a coup.

While Van Dijk has started every Premier League game since the end of January 2018, Matip went into this game having played just 75 minutes in the top flight in almost exactly a year.

And having already seen Alisson Becker sidelined for the foreseeable, now Liverpool are facing up to the very real prospect of being without the talismanic Virgil van Dijk for a significant period.
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