Liverpool should act on their interest in RB Leipzig defender Dayot Upamecano in January to cover for Virgil van Dijk while he is out injured,Jamie Carragher says.

Ex-Liverpool star Carragher believes the Premier League champions need to dip into the transfer market to compensate for the Netherlands captain’s absence and feels Upamecano, who has also been linked to Manchester United, would be a smart January signing.

“Liverpool’s next big signing had to be a centre-back anyway and I am talking next summer,” the former England defender said onSky Sports.

“Dejan Lovren went and they didn’t replace him so they only have three centre-backs and one of those, Joel Matip, is always injured. There are question marks now about Joe Gomez.

“So there is no doubt that Liverpool had to go big in the transfer market next summer. That was the next one. That has now got to be brought forward to January 1st, whoever the target was in the summer. Not the end of January. Not wasting time that month negotiating with a club.”

He added:”There is a young man everyone was talking about at Leipzig, Dayot Upamecano, there is talk of him. Whether he has the profile of Van Dijk, I think he is only 6’1″ or 6’2″, so he is maybe not that aerial, but if he is the one they wanted then bring it forward.

“Pay extra money and do it on January 1st. That means getting through 11 league games without Virgil van Dijk.

“One thing to say about Virgil van Dijk is that in the last 23 games they have only kept five clean sheets, and Van Dijk played all of them, so it is not like everything was perfect. We saw the seven against Aston Villa and we saw the Leeds game.

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