Daniel Agger Expected to Make Liverpool Return After Freak Gym Accident
Agger missed Monday’s 2-2 draw at Swansea after he took evasive action from a falling dumbbell. Brendan Rodgers described the incident, per Dominic King of the Daily Mail:
He had a real freak incident in the gym. Just before he was coming out to train, he overstretched trying to prevent a dumbbell falling on his foot.
He has overstretched and yanked his side. We are waiting to see if that settles down over the next few days. If it doesn’t, we have got ample replacements. That is why we brought in extra players.
Rodgers steered clear of predicting Agger’s immediate return for Liverpool’s fifth league game of the season, which sees them entertain Southampton at Anfield.
However, the official Liverpool website had earlier shed light on the Dane's expected recovery time, reporting:
The Reds' vice-captain travelled with the team to Wales to give the Danish international every chance to feature at the Liberty Stadium, but the decision was taken not to risk the defender.
Although the issue is enough to rule Agger out of tonight's match, there is no long-term concern regarding the centre-back's fitness.
In Agger’s absence, Liverpool conceded for the first time in the league this season. Jonjo Shelvey capitalised on a lucky swing-and-miss that fooled Steven Gerrard before clipping the ball home at the second attempt.
Michu added another for Swansea as the Reds settled for a point at the Liberty Stadium, earned through Daniel Sturridge and Victor Moses strikes.
Mamadou Sakho was Agger’s replacement at centre-back and served instant notice he will be a towering force for Liverpool this season.
Signed for a reported £18 million, the Frenchman did dive in recklessly on a couple of occasions, but he was an authority in the air and showed excellent pace to repel a wave of Swansea attacks in the second period.
15 - Mamadou Sakho made 15 clearances tonight, the most by a Liverpool player in a league game this season. Baptism.— OptaJean (@OptaJean) September 16, 2013
“Sakho did very well,” Rodgers said in King’s article. “He has played a lot over pre-season but he has come back in and done very well. I thought he was excellent and assured. Once he gets used to working with us, he will improve.”
Should Agger miss Liverpool’s next game, Sakho will continue with Martin Skrtel at the heart of the defence. Kolo Toure did come on as a second-half substitute at right-back against Swansea but will likely remain on the bench at the weekend.
Rodgers may wish to assess Andre Wisdom’s starting role though, after the youngster delivered an unsure display before being replaced by Toure in the 69th minute.
Wisdom looked uncomfortable on the ball against Swansea's pressure game, straying with seven of 27 attempted passes, per FourFourTwo. He also failed to cover adequately as Michu scored the equaliser and made only two tackles in the contest.
Martin Kelly was on the bench and is nearing full fitness following a lengthy injury layoff. With Glen Johnson still sidelined, Kelly represents the more attacking option if Rodgers opts to change things up.
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