After more occurrences of Covid-19 within the team prompted the cancellation of training on Tuesday, Liverpool has formally requested that the Carabao Cup semi-final first leg against Arsenal on Thursday be postponed.
After the current round of testing revealed additional cases within the first-team bubble, manager Jurgen Klopp and three players – Alisson Becker, Roberto Firmino, and Joel Matip – were forced to miss Sunday’s 2-2 draw against Chelsea after testing positive.
“The Reds have formally asked to the EFL that the game be postponed following further suspected positive tests among players and staff, coupled to other circumstances influencing selection, including illness and injury,” the club stated in a statement.
“As a result, the club ceased preparations at the AXA Training Centre, resulting in the cancellation of Tuesday’s first-team training session.”
“One of the factors that led to today’s application to the EFL was the necessity to provide as much warning as possible to travelling fans of any potential postponement.”
Due to sickness and injuries, Liverpool were without nine players for the encounter against Chelsea, and have since lost Mohamed Salah, Naby Keita, and Sadio Mane to Africa Cup of Nations service.
The plea for a postponement also casts doubt on Sunday’s FA Cup third-round fixture against Shrewsbury at home.
The return leg of the semi-final is set for January 13 at Anfield.
“The league has received a request from Liverpool to postpone Thursday’s Carabao Cup semi-final first leg vs Arsenal this evening, which will now be assessed in accordance with the competition regulations as laid out at the start of the season alongside information supplied by the club,” an EFL spokeswoman stated.
“Once the facts have been properly evaluated, we will aim to confirm the league’s position as quickly as possible.”