Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp told he has new indispensable player after injury problems

Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson is now indispensable for Jurgen Klopp following the injury to captain Virgil van Dijk, according to former Tottenham striker Darren Bent. Van Dijk is set to miss the rest of the season after injuring his anterior cruciate knee ligament in the 2-2 Merseyside derby draw at Everton in October.

Van Dijk is not the only player Liverpool are missing, with Joe Gomez also likely to sit out the rest of the campaign with a knee injury of his own picked up on international duty.

Bent says, in the absence of Van Dijk, Henderson is now the most crucial player for Liverpool.

Henderson is struggling with a back injury though could still be available for Sunday’s match against table-toppers Leicester City.

“Probably the biggest influence, other than Van Dijk which is the obvious one, is the captain Jordan Henderson,” Bent said on the Kelly and Wrighty Show.

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“He’s that kind of driving force and we’ve seen already when he’s not on the pitch, standards slip a little bit.

“When he’s there he doesn’t allow that to happen.”

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Liverpool ran away with the Premier League title last season, finishing 18 points clear of second-placed Manchester City to win the trophy for the first time.

But the early signs this season suggest a much closer title race.

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Klopp’s squad is being stretched to the limit, with 19-year-old Rhys Williams in line for a potential league debut this weekend.

Right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold remains sidelined with a calf problem and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain continues to be hampered by a knee injury.

Bent says this season will be a true test of Klopp and says there are doubts over whether the German can get performances he wants from a much-depleted squad.

“This is where Jurgen Klopp’s going to earn his money,” Bent added.

“We know he’s a world class manager, we know he’s got the very best out of this squad, but when you’ve got that many key injuries, not just squad injuries, key injuries, that’s where he’s going to earn his money.

“I think that’s where a lot of people are going to, not question him, but go ‘can he come out of this period unscathed?’.

“Listen, he’s doing a great job but I’m not quite sure how you can replace them, those key players.”

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