Dejan Lovren has not travelled with the rest of the Liverpool squad to Istanbul ahead of their UEFA Super Cup clash against Chelsea on Wednesday night, it has been confirmed.
Liverpool announced via their official website on Tuesday that Lovren, 30, will stay at home due to illness.
Jurgen Klopp’s squad jet out to Turkey from John Lennon Airport in Liverpool on Tuesday morning ahead of their meeting with the Europa League champions at Besiktas’ Vodafone Park.
It’s a bit suspicious that Lovren has been left at home while the squad travels to Istanbul with what the club has confirmed to be an “illness”. When players are linked with moves away from their club they often are hit with illness or small injuries that no one ever truly believes. Times journalist Paul Joyce has reported that Roma are in talks with Liverpool about a deal for the Croatia international after he dropped down Klopp’s pecking order of centre-backs. Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez and Joel Matip are all above Lovren and he does not seem to be content with playing fourth fiddle behind his team-mates. It is no surprise that Lovren would want to leave – but why are Liverpool considering it? They will be one injury or suspension away from having a shortage of centre-backs. All the best teams in the world need strength in depth and while he has been widely criticised at Anfield, Lovren is probably the best fourth-choice centre-back in the Premier League.