In Depth

Liverpool beat Bayern Munich but fears mount for Klopp

An injury to Daniel Sturridge and speculation over Philippe Coutinho take the sheen off a fine performance

Liverpool made a statement of intent when they beat Bayern Munich 3-0 in a pre-season friendly in Germany on Tuesday night, but the result has been overshadowed by another injury to Daniel Sturridge and the news that Neymar's move to Paris Saint-Germain is on.

Instead of celebrating the win, manager Jurgen Klopp will now be sweating over the fitness of a key striker and, even more worryingly, the future of Philippe Coutinho, who has been earmarked by Barcelona as the player to replace their PSG-bound superstar.

Coutinho has been linked with a big-money move to Barcelona all summer by the Spanish media, despite ever-more forceful denials from Klopp. If the Spanish giants are presented with a payment of £198m for Neymar, they will be unstoppable in the transfer market.

According to the Daily Mail, Barca's first act after cashing their mammoth cheque will be to up their offer for Coutinho to over £100m. 

"They are under intense pressure to make a statement signing from supporters distraught at losing Neymar and will go back to Liverpool with an improved offer after a £72m bid was rejected earlier this summer," says the paper.

There is hope for the Reds as Barcelona are also chasing alternatives, including Ousmane Dembele of Borussia Dortmund, PSG star Angel Di Maria and teenage sensation Kylian Mbappe of Monaco, says the paper.

A more immediate issue for Klopp is yet another injury to England striker Sturridge, who appeared to suffer a thigh injury in the act of scoring Liverpool's third and final goal against Bayern.

What should have been the icing on the cake could end up leaving a sour taste in the mouth for Reds fans.

"The injury-prone Liverpool striker chipped an exquisite finish over Bayern goalkeeper Sven Ulreich," says The Guardian. But in doing so "sustained a thigh injury that forced his own substitution with four minutes remaining. The England international will have further tests before the full extent of the problem and any lay-off is known."

It could be another "cruel blow" for the striker who appeared to be in fine form, says the Daily Telegraph.

"The incident marred an otherwise encouraging night for Klopp… [his] side have looked outstanding in their friendlies so far, but defeating Bayern is a different level."

Sturridge's strike came after first half goals from Liverpool's two flyers, Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah.

"The manner in which Klopp's side ran such an accomplished side ragged on their own turf will have many wondering where this side is heading over the next 12 months. On this evidence, expect the opening weekend to sound like a starting pistol to Klopp's sprinters."

Recommended

All at sixes and sevens: a mad day in Premier League history
Liverpool goalkeeper Adrian bumps fists with Aston Villa hat-trick hero Ollie Watkins
In Depth

All at sixes and sevens: a mad day in Premier League history

Hayes: Chelsea will learn from Champions League final loss
Barcelona captain Vicky Losada lifts the Uefa Women’s Champions League trophy
Sports Shorts

Hayes: Chelsea will learn from Champions League final loss

Messi vs. Ronaldo: all-time career goals and UCL records
Cristiano Ronaldo in action for Juventus against Lionel Messi of Barcelona
In Depth

Messi vs. Ronaldo: all-time career goals and UCL records

Porto will host the Champions League final between Man City and Chelsea
Estadio do Dragao in Porto, Portugal
Sports Shorts

Porto will host the Champions League final between Man City and Chelsea

Popular articles

The link between Bill Gates and Jeffrey Epstein examined
Bill Gates
Behind the scenes

The link between Bill Gates and Jeffrey Epstein examined

TV crime dramas to watch in 2021
Chris Rock stars in the fourth series of Fargo
In Review

TV crime dramas to watch in 2021

Ten Things You Need to Know Today: 18 May 2021
10 Downing Street
Daily Briefing

Ten Things You Need to Know Today: 18 May 2021