Former Premier League striker Kevin Phillips has suggested that Liverpool have been dealt a blow by Curtis Jones’ injury ahead of their clash with Real Madrid in the Champions League.
Phillips says that it is a blow for both Liverpool and Jones, as the England under-21 central midfielder has been ‘fantastic’ this season.
He adds that is a shame for Jones that he could now miss games at the back end of the campaign ahead of the European Championships for England this summer.
Speaking to Football Insider, Kevin Phillips reacted to Jones suffering a muscle injury. “It is a big blow for him personally and to Liverpool.
“There is only a handful of games left and he would have been desperate to have been involved, especially with the Euros coming up in the summer.
“One thing is for sure, nobody wants to get injured at this stage of the season, it is a blow for him.
“He has been fantastic in what has been a difficult season for Liverpool. It is a shame he’s not available tonight.”
ANFIELD WATCH VERDICT
Jones’ form in the Champions League has been exceptional this season and Liverpool not having him available for either leg has been a huge shame. He has averaged a superb WhoScored rating of 7.37 across five Champions League appearances this term, producing one goal and two assists in that time. This shows that he is capable of stepping up with quality display in Europe, which means that he could have been extremely useful to Liverpool against Real Madrid.
Liverpool struggled in midfield in the first leg as Naby Keita was substituted in the first half by Jurgen Klopp without any injury issue. The Reds were struggling to get close to Toni Kroos as the German ran the game and helped create Real’s first two goals with his passing from deep. Hypothetical, of course, but Jones’ energy in midfield could have helped to counter Kroos’ passing by closing him down quicker than Keita was able to do.
Hopefully, Jones will be able to return soon and still play a part before the end of the season to give himself the best chance of making the England squad this summer, as Kevin Phillips suggests that could be one of his aims. He could even play in the Champions League again if Liverpool are able to complete a comeback against Real Madrid on Wednesday night and progress through to the semi-finals.
I’m a 22-year-old football writer from Lowestoft. I produce, edit, and publish articles for Anfield Watch full-time.