Liverpool sent warning by Ajax ahead of Champions League clash

Ajax have well and truly sent Liverpool a warning ahead of their Champions League clash next week.

The defending Dutch champions will welcome their English counterparts to the Johan Cruyff Arena on Wednesday night for their opening Group D fixture.

Erik ten Hag's men will go into their clash with the Reds as huge underdogs. They will, however, be brimming with confidence when they welcome the Merseysiders to the Dutch capital.

Ten Hag's troops will face the Merseysiders on the back of a 5-1 demolition of Heerenveen, who currently occupy sixth place in the Eredivisie.

Goals from Mohammed Kudus, Davey Klassen, Anthony dos Santos and a first-half brace from former Southampton winger Dusan Tadic saw the Dutch champions bounce back the defeat they suffered at the hands of Groningen before the international break.

Ajax's annihilation of Heerenveen will be a worry to Reds boss Jurgen Klopp, who is currently dealing with a major defensive headache.

The German won't be able to call on the services of Virgil van Dijk for Wednesday's clash with the Sons of God following the knee injury the centre-back picked up in Saturday's 2-2 draw with Everton.

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Van Dijk was crocked by a horrific knee-high tackle from Toffees goalkeeper Jordan Pickford, who somehow managed to escape punishment for his reckless challenge.

Joe Gomez came off the bench to deputise for the Netherlands ace and is expected to do so again against Ajax.

The 23-year-old, who had been relegated to the bench following a poor performance in the Reds' 7-2 loss to Aston Villa before the international break, gave a stellar account of himself in the Merseyside Derby.

"Joe Gomez played a sensational game," Klopp said in his post-match press conference. "I think everybody thought, ‘Chip the long balls, [Dominic] Calvert-Lewin.’ Gomez dealt outstanding with it. I liked it a lot. Good game, same old result.”

Van Dijk isn't the only player's services Klopp will be without for Wednesday's clash with Ajax – with first-choice Reds keeper Alisson still on the sidelines with a shoulder injury.

Former West ham stopper Adrian is expected to continue keeping goal during Alisson's absence, which is set to end after the November international break.

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