Kovacic, Fabinho out of Saturday FA Cup final
The diagnosis is a significant setback for the Liverpool manager, Jürgen Klopp, who was left downbeat by the sight of the midfielder limping out
Liverpool midfielder Fabinho is facing a battle to be fit for Liverpool’s Champions League final against Real Madrid at the end of the month after scans confirmed that he suffered a hamstring strain against Aston Villa.
The Brazil international will miss the FA Cup final against Chelsea on Saturday and Liverpool’s remaining Premier League games against Southampton and Wolverhampton Wanderers.
The diagnosis is a significant setback for the Liverpool manager, Jürgen Klopp, who was left downbeat by the sight of the midfielder limping out of the first half of their 2-1 win at Villa Park on Tuesday, which kept the pressure on Premier League leaders Manchester City.
Fabinho pulled up as he sought to win back possession from Philippe Coutinho and immediately signalled to the substitutes’ bench that he felt discomfort.
He was replaced by his captain Jordan Henderson after 30 minutes.
The 28-year-old was included in Brazil’s squad for next month’s international fixtures and the national team’s physical trainer, Fábio Mahseredjian, said: “We don’t have all the information yet, but we are optimistic that he will reach the Champions League final.”
Also Mateo Kovacic another for Real Madrid star playing for Chelsea is a major doubt for the FA Cup Final after he was on the receiving end of a shocking challenge by Dan James.
The Chelsea star was clattered by Leeds’ former Manchester United man just 24 minutes into Wednesday’s 3-0 Premier League win.
The Croatian international, 28, was floored as the Welsh forward launched an X-rated two-footed lunge at him.
As the Elland Road crowd roared their approval, those cheers soon turned to outrage as the referee instantly waved a red card.
James looked shocked, but the official was in no doubt that he had witnessed a wild and dangerous two-footed lunge as Kovacic rolled around in agony.
And once VAR confirmed it, the Leeds man trudged off the field as the Blues ace received treatment.
Kovacic was able to walk to the touchline with the help of the club physio before making his way back onto the field.
And his return was met by a huge chorus of boos as he turned into public enemy No1.
Ruben Loftus-Cheek had been sent out for a warm-up throughout the injury delay, but no sooner had he stuck his tracksuit top back on after getting stripped was it back off.
Kovacic played on for just a few moments before he fell to the ground again inside the centre circle and signalled to come off with the England international taking his place.
Kovacic was then met by a tirade of abuse as he reached the dug-out, which was greeted with a smile, before he limped back down the tunnel with an ice pack strapped to his left ankle.