Ally McCoist has given his verdict on Liverpool’s Premier League title hopes, touching on several key Reds players that are currently on the sidelines.
He spoke of how Diogo Jota, in particular, has been “absolutely fantastic” since he arrived at Anfield, and claimed his absence “doesn’t even get a mention”.
The 24-year-old hit the ground running at Anfield following his £41million move from Wolves in September, registering nine goals in 17 competitive appearances for the Reds.
Jota’s heroics gave Jurgen Klopp a positive selection headache in terms of his strongest front line, which already boasts Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah.
However, a knee injury suffered during the Champions League game against Midtjylland in early December has since ruled the Portugal international out of action.
Jota is one of several key players currently on the sidelines, alongside the likes of Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez, Sadio Mane, Fabinho, Alisson Becker and Joel Matip.
Asked by talkSPORT host Alan Brazil if the Liverpool are still more likely to lift the title than Manchester United this season, McCoist replied: “I think they are.
“You’ve got to say Liverpool have been a little bit unlucky with their injuries. I don’t think anybody could deny that.
“Alisson has been out for a while, the loss of Van Dijk, Gomez, Jota doesn’t even get a mention really. He came into the side and looked absolutely fantastic.
“They have missed Mane and lost key players… you’ve got to say (Manchester) City are by far and away outstanding favourites.”
It’s been one of those seasons for Liverpool, where pretty much everything that could’ve gone wrong has gone wrong.
Although the Reds have been battling bravely in pursuit of a second consecutive title, there have just been too many hurdles in the shape of big absences.
Liverpool have done well to remain in contention, but no team would be able to retain a title with so many key players out.