Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah and centre-back Virgil Van Dijk limped off during the Reds’ FA Cup final win against Chelsea on Saturday, casting a shadow over an otherwise perfect evening for the quadruple-chasing side.
While Salah was forced off with an injury in 33rd minute of the final, Van Dijk almost lasted the full 90, before being replaced by Joel Matip ahead of extra time.
Although both players were present during Liverpool’s celebrations after their 6-5 penalty shootout win, doubts remained over their fitness ahead of clutch ties that could make or break the Reds’ historic quadruple push.
Commenting on the injuries after the match, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp expressed optimism, telling the press, “Mo came and he said he could carry on, but felt a little thing. I hope he will be fine.”
Klopp went on to say that Van Dijk “had little problems,” adding that he believed the big Dutchman was “fine” and would be back on pitch before the end of this season.
The two Liverpool players, however, appeared to be even more optimistic about the status of their injuries.
Speaking after the match, Van Dijk told the press, “Hopefully I’m well, we’re going to check it out.”
“I felt it in the first half when I sprinted. I felt a twinge behind my knee, but I played on,” the 30-year-old said, adding, “In the end, I can’t risk it for the team and I need to trust players like Joel Matip. Hopefully it will be fine.”
As for Liverpool’s talismanic forward, the Egyptian was all smiles after the FA Cup final win despite his injury.
Asked whether he would be fit for the Champions League final against a prolific Real Madrid side, Salah replied, “Of course, of course! It’s all good!”
Both Salah and Van Dijk are indispensable to Liverpool and could be the difference between victory or defeat at Paris when the Reds face Carlo Ancelotti’s veteran side.