Jurgen Klopp made a mistake in the January transfer in Liverpool’s last shot

Liverpool did not have to wait a day before the transfer deadline to sign the center-back because they knew Virgil van Dijk had no season.

That’s what QPR striker Charlie Austin says, who believes the Reds needed to act faster to fill the gap at the back.

Liverpool have been hit hard this season without injuries and without central defenders Van Dijk, Joel Matip and Joe Gomez.

Midfielder Jordan Henderson and Fabinho filled in at the back, but the Reds dropped points every week and are now sixth in the Premier League table.

Liverpool signed two central defenders in January, bringing in Ozan Kabak from Schalke and Ben Davies from Preston.

Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool are struggling this season

But Austin doesn’t understand why Liverpool are waiting for the final day of the transfer window to grab the defenders.

“They have a long list of injuries – and I have them – but it’s part of football,” Austin told talkSPORT. “Van Dijk has a massive injury in November, and they know there’s no season, and they need a day until the deadline to try to replace him?

“You can’t replace him, but bring in someone who can fill the gap … I’m not sure they did it.”

He added: “Second season syndrome … you usually say that for promoted teams, that their first year is good and their second year is not.

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“Wait a minute, Liverpool are doing it here.

“I, as a Liverpool fan, had a fantastic last year. I was thinking, ‘Come on, let’s get that back and keep running for two / three / four / five years like United did.

“But it just didn’t happen. And right now it’s going to be a fight for the first four … it’s going to be a fight for the first six!”