Jamie Carragher defended Jordan Pickford on Sky Sports after the Everton keeper left Liverpool defender Virgil Van Dijk with a serious knee injury.
Pickford recklessly jumped into Van Dijk during Saturday’s Merseyside Derby, forcing the 29-year-old to leave the field of play injured, but faced no punishment for what was a horrific challenge.
As a result, Van Dijk looks as though he will be out of action for some time.
Virgil van Dijk will undergo surgery on the knee injury sustained during Saturday’s 2-2 draw at @Everton.
Following surgery, Virgil will begin a rehabilitation programme to enable him to reach full fitness as soon as possible.
You’ll come back stronger, @VirgilvDijk ?
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) October 18, 2020
Carragher, a one-club man at Liverpool, could be forgiven for holding it against England international Pickford, but the Sky Sports pundit has rushed to the defence of the goalkeeper.
Have a look at this clip below, where Carragher draws on a challenge he made which could have left former Manchester United winger Nani with an equally as serious injury.
“I’ve had my leg broken, I nearly broke Nani’s leg…”@Carra23 defends Jordan Pickford after it was confirmed that Virgil van Dijk will undergo surgery for a knee injury after a reckless lunge from the Everton ‘keeper… pic.twitter.com/1ib5W1paFT
— Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) October 18, 2020
Thankfully for Nani, the damage was not done to him as it was Van Dijk, but Carragher is right in comparing the two. Pickford will no doubt feel awful for ruling a fellow professional out of action for a prolonged period.
There didn’t appear to be any intention from Pickford to injure Van Dijk – it was just reckless, and bad goalkeeping, which is something we have seen plenty of from him for Everton in recent times.
Van Dijk may not be as forgiving as Carragher, at least not right now, but we’re sure he would recognise that there was no malice or intent in Pickford’s challenge.