Liverpool will be without regular starter Nathaniel Clyne for another three months, leaving their defence further strained ahead of the festive schedule.
The English media reported on Monday evening that the England international has undergone corrective back surgery on an issue that has plagued him for months, and will continue to do so with the 25-year-old now set to miss another three months of action.
After barely featuring in pre-season, Clyne is yet to play a competitive minute of football due to the back injury, one that has caused much concern amongst fans due to the lack of public information on it.
Whilst the clarity that Monday's news offered was a relief to some fans, others are now concerned as to how Liverpool's defence will continue to cope in the coming months.
Defensive reinforcements stretched
Youngsters Trent Alexander-Arnold and Joe Gomez have so far filled in for Clyne, alternating in games with Gomez often being preferred in the league whilst Alexander-Arnold has featured in most Champions League games.
However, with both inexperienced at top level, a bad run of form is never far away, whilst Gomez is also supposed to be cover at centre-back.
If you pin the England U21 captain as a right-back, for now at least, it leaves Liverpool with just three senior centre-back's in Joel Matip, Dejan Lovren and Ragnar Klavan.
With Alberto Moreno and Andrew Robertson in a battle for the left-back spot, Jurgen Klopp has just seven fit senior defender's to cover four position's ahead of a spell where the Reds will play 13 games in 45 days.
Defensive reinforcements may be looked at through the transfer market in January, but how much damage this injury could do to Liverpool's season until then remains to be seen.