VIRGIL VAN DIJK faces a race against time to be fit for Liverpool’s Champions League showdown with Real Madrid next month.

Boss Jurgen Klopp revealed his defensive kingpin will be out for “more than a month” with a hamstring injury and is battling to make the last-16 first-leg tie at Anfield on February 21.

Virgil van Dijk will be out for over a month with a hamstring injury

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Virgil van Dijk will be out for over a month with a hamstring injuryCredit: Rex
The defender came off at half-time in the 3-1 defeat to Brentford

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The defender came off at half-time in the 3-1 defeat to BrentfordCredit: Getty

Klopp said: “It’s absolutely a big blow — the diagnosis is really harsh.

“It’s very hard on Virgil but he has played an incredible number of games in the last years.

“He’s never had a muscle problem before — it was just one sprint too many for him.”

Van Dijk was crocked as Liverpool went down 3-1 to Brentford on Monday.

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Klopp added: “Virgil was a surprise to us. He didn’t feel a lot.

“It’s not short term and it’s not long term but he will be out for a few weeks definitely.”

Klopp’s men take on Carlo Ancelotti’s Euro kings, a repeat of last year’s final in Paris, in just over six weeks.

It would seem the best VVD can hope for is to return to training ten days before that game.

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That would see the £75million man miss four Premier League matches as well as Saturday’s FA Cup third-round tie with Wolves.

Liverpool take on Brighton, Chelsea, Wolves and Everton in their next four Prem games.



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