As expected, Virgil van Dijk has been inducted into the Liverpool Premier League squad for the remainder of the season, although he is unlikely to be there.
After the winter transfer window had closed, all clubs had to submit their updated squad for the 2020/21 campaign by February 2 at 11:00 p.m.
Liverpool’s administrative staff were busy with the late arrivals of Ozan Kabak and Ben Davies, while Takumi Minamino was also leaving on the deadline.
The Premier League has now confirmed the squad for the remainder of the season, with Van Dijk not being included in the selection submitted back in October.
A minimum of eight local players must be registered for a full 25-man roster to be admitted. With Davies, the reds are now named nine.
One of them is U23 striker Joe Hardy, although the 22-year-old’s inclusion is no indication of an upcoming leadership role as he was also registered at the start of the season.
The only other change, apart from Van Dijk and Davies, is the removal of Minamino, who is instead now part of Ralph Hasenhuttl’s Premier League squad in Southampton.
At the age of 20, Kabak doesn’t have to be part of the squad. Players under the age of 21 are eligible beyond the 25 man limit.
Curtis Jones, Neco Williams, Rhys Williams, Billy Koumetio, Leighton Clarkson, Jake Cain and Marcelo Pitaluga are also among the under-21s.
Although Van Dijk has been added to the squad, it shouldn’t raise any hope of returning anytime soon after last year’s knee surgery as he is only included in the event of an unlikely comeback before the end of May.
If there was room, if not admitted, he would have been viewed as negligent – as was the case with both Joe Gomez and Joel Matip, neither of whom is expected before the start of next season.
Liverpool’s updated squad in the Premier League
Goalkeepers: Alisson, Adrian, Kelleher *
Defenders: Van Dijk, Gomez *, Matip, Davies *, Phillips *, Alexander-Arnold *, Robertson, Tsimikas
Midfielders: Henderson *, Fabinho, Wijnaldum, Thiago, Milner *, Keita, Shaqiri, Oxlade-Chamberlain *
Forward: Salah, Mane, Firmino, Jota, Origi, Hardy *
Notable U21s: Jones, N. Williams, R. Williams, Koumetio, Clarkson, Kain, Pitaluga