The latest midfield injury setback for Liverpool is captain Jordan Henderson missing the remainder of September.
Despite this, the Reds have added seven of their younger talents to their Champions League roster.
The Reds’ captain, who is still out with a hamstring injury, will not be available for Wednesday’s away Champions League match against Napoli.
The Reds acquired Brazilian midfielder Arthur Melo on the last day of the transfer window after Henderson hobbled off with a hamstring problem during the second half of last week’s 2-1 Premier League victory over Newcastle United.
After giving Henderson a thorough examination, the Reds now anticipate that he won’t be able to play until the beginning of October.
This means that, in addition to sitting out the club’s upcoming four Champions League and Premier League games, Henderson will also miss last Saturday’s Merseyside derby.
Liverpool’s European season gets underway on Wednesday when they go to Napoli.
They then play at home against Wolves on Saturday, Ajax in the Champions League the following week, and Chelsea the following Sunday.
After that, there will be a global break, and Henderson is now unlikely to join up with England.
Thiago Alcantara, Naby Keita, and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain are also out, while Keita and Oxlade-Chamberlain were not even named to Liverpool’s Champions League team for the group stages. Henderson is joining them in being absent.
While Curtis Jones was on the bench against Newcastle but then did not play against Everton, Thiago is said to be the closest to returning and might make an appearance in Naples.
The academy graduate is one of seven new additions to Liverpool’s Player List B for the Champions League, along with Harvey Elliott.
A player meets the criteria for List B, per UEFA regulations, “if he is born on or after 1 January 2001 and since his 15th birthday has been eligible to play for the club concerned for any uninterrupted period of two years, or a total of three consecutive years, with a maximum of one loan period to a club from the same association for a period not exceeding one year.”
If a 16-year-old player has been continuously registered with the participating club for the preceding two years, they may be added to List B.
Elliott, 19, has now earned a spot on that list after joining Liverpool in 2019 and spending time on loan at Blackburn.
Other young players, however, like Stefan Bajcetic, who joined from Celta Vigo in 2020; Calvin Ramsay, who joined from Aberdeen in the summer; and Fabio Carvalho, who joined from Fulham this year, must be listed on List A with the rest of the first-team squad.
Along with Jones and Elliott, List B now includes goalkeeper Harvey Davies, defenders Isaac Mabaya and Luke Chambers, midfielder Dominic Corness, and striker Melkamu Frauendorf.
All but Corness had some preseason experience with Liverpool and could now participate in the Champions League.