Why Lindelof is absent at Anfield

Sunday 05 March 2023 15:52

Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag has confirmed Victor Lindelof has a minor injury as the Sweden defender was absent from the matchday squad at Liverpool.

The manager has named the same side that started the Carabao Cup final against Newcastle United last weekend but stresses this is just a coincidence as he has prepared a game plan to tackle the Merseysiders on home turf.

Diogo Dalot gets the nod ahead of Aaron Wan-Bissaka at right-back and Raphael Varane starts despite doubts over his fitness in the morning newspapers.

Alejandro Garnacho has to be content with a place on the bench, despite a Man-of-the-Match display against West Ham United in the Emirates FA Cup in midweek, but could be a potent weapon at some point in proceedings.

Arriving at Anfield Video

Arriving at Anfield

See the United squad entering the ground as we prepare for a huge Premier League encounter...

"Definitely everyone wants to play," Erik said to MUTV. "But, after every game on a high level, where it's intense, you have some knocks so we have to live with it."

Regarding Lindelof, he repeated: "So, after every game, you have some knocks! It was too short a time to recover for him. A pity for us but, okay, we have to deal with it."

When it came down to choosing his right-back, the manager feels Dalot has been in good form, even though he is being pushed all the way by Wan-Bissaka.

"It's every time [a matter of making this decision]," he admitted. "But I think Diogo is doing a good job, against Newcastle, against West Ham in the week and previously. But it's very close because Aaron is playing very well."

Ten Hag believes the win at Old Trafford will have no bearing on the match at Anfield, as the Reds chase what would be a sweet Premier League double over our biggest rivals.

"I think it is a coincidence," he told Sky Sports, when it was pointed out this is the same XI as the Carabao Cup final. "We played also others but we thought it was the best one for this game.

"We have to play our best because we play against an incredibly good team and when they play on their levels, they come to win but we like the challenge and we will go for it.

"It’s another game, of course that was months ago [when we beat Liverpool 2-1]. So the team has developed. You can’t compare it, it’s gone, it’s in the past. Now we have to think in the future."

Ten Hag explains his selection Video

Ten Hag explains his selection

Erik explains his team selection for the Liverpool game and Victor Lindelof's absence...


Liverpool: Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Konate, Van Dijk, Robertson; Fabinho, Henderson (c), Elliott; Salah, Gakpo, Nunez.

Kelleher, Matip, Tsimikas, Bajcetic, Jones, Milner, Carvalho, Firmino, Jota.

De Gea; Dalot, Varane, Martinez, Shaw; Casemiro, Fred; Antony, Fernandes (c), Rashford; Weghorst.

Substitutes: Heaton, Maguire, Malacia, Wan-Bissaka, McTominay, Sabitzer, Elanga, Garnacho, Sancho.