Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has big defensive decision to make over Joel Matip

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp could have to decide this weekend who features in his best central defensive pairing in the absence of Virgil van Dijk.

Fabinho and Joe Gomez kept a clean sheet for the Reds as the Champions League got underway against Ajax.

Though Joel Matip could be fit enough to feature for Liverpool this weekend against Sheffield United.

Matip is arguably more comfortable in defence than Fabinho, though the Brazilian has often impressed when forced into the role.

Klopp has the decision to make with Van Dijk battling to play again this season as the Dutchman needs surgery on his ACL following a tackle from Jordan Pickford.

Matip missed the clash with Ajax with a niggle though could return in the Premier League with Liverpool facing plenty of fixtures.

Gomez and Fabinho’s partnership was the 35th centre-back pairing used by Klopp, and the boss insisted the Brazilian can improve in the role as he hinted this duo could stay.

He said: "Good but even Fabinho can play better. This combination had not played together so they need to get used to each other, the verbal commands, what you need to say to the midfield.

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"Fabinho can play the position, he likes playing it actually. If I asked him to play right-back I don't think he would enjoy it as much.

"I'm not surprised Fabinho plays in the position, otherwise I would have thought about a different solution.

"It was a good performance but there is a lot to improve, that is good. It was absolutely good tonight and we'd like it to carry on.

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"We are not dumb enough to think we didn't need a bit of luck as Fabinho needed to make a proper stretch to get that ball from the line and they hit the post.

"A clean sheet is one information but we could have done better. I don't care in the moment as we wanted to win the game and we have done that."

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