LONDON (Reuters) - Liverpool's growing injury list is becoming a concern for Jurgen Klopp but the German manager has backed his academy players to make the transition when he does call them up to the first team.
A potential injury crisis threatens to undermine Liverpool's Premier League title aspirations with midfielder Emre Can joining playmaker Philippe Coutinho, striker Daniel Sturridge and long-term absentee Danny Ings on the sidelines.
"It's far away from being the perfect situation. Emre is out for this game, for example. If Emre was back then we would have one position to change, with an experienced player," Klopp told British media of the German's withdrawal ahead of Sunday's 2-2 draw with West Ham.
"I love our young players. They are brilliant but West Ham was not a game to bring them in. We believe in them, of course, and we will use them for sure. It's not perfect but what can I talk about?
"We cannot change it in this moment, because you will start asking about what I will do in the transfer window. We have to sort it out now, players will come back, we will see how another one develops and take our decisions. We take what we get."
With a hectic festive schedule on the horizon, Klopp was certain that Liverpool's title rivals will soon have injury problems of their own.
"The difference is, if you want, that we have had our (injury) problems already. Other teams will get them because no one will go through without problems," the charismatic German added.
Liverpool can leapfrog Arsenal into second place if they beat 16th-placed Middlesbrough by at least three goals at the Riverside Stadium on Wednesday.