Southampton confirmed on Sunday evening that goalkeeper Alex McCarthy will miss Monday night’s Premier League clash with Liverpool at St Mary’s having tested positive for Coronavirus, and there is no doubt that it is a mammoth blow for manager Ralph Hasenhuttl.
The 31-year-old has established himself as the Austrian’s undoubted number one stopper during his reign at the south coast outfit, and he has started and played the full 90 minutes in every one of their fixtures in all competitions for Saints this season.
The former RB Leipzig coach has praised the “fantastic” England international for his performances, and the progress he has made in becoming a goalkeeper more comfortable at playing out from the back, during the current campaign, and it will be the first time he has been absent from the starting XI since the FA Cup fourth round defeat against Tottenham back in February.
Back-up keeper Fraser Forster will fill the void against Jurgen Klopp’s men on Monday evening, and he will be looking to make the most of his opportunity to impress Hasenhuttl having returned from a loan spell with Celtic last term to try and re-establish himself as the number one choice at St Mary’s.
It could prove to be a tough ask for the 32-year-old against the likes of Mo Salah and former Saint Sadio Mane however, and he will need to be at his very best if the hosts are to get a result against the Premier League leaders.
In other Southampton news, Martin Semmens must axe Saints talent who clearly has no future under Ralph Hasenhuttl…