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Jamie Carragher is confident Liverpool will retain the Premier League if they add a centre-half in January.
The Reds stormed to the title last term and have their sights set on becoming just the second side to win back-to-back titles in a decade.
But this season has presented its fair share of challenges and Jurgen Klopp is dealing with a lengthy injury list.
The most notable name on that list is Virgil van Dijk, who has led Liverpool's defensive impressively in recent times.
Several of his understudies have also suffered with injuries leaving a big hole at the back.
But Carragher believes adding a new face in January can be the difference between them winning the title and not.
Jurgen Klopp has had to deal with a host of injuries
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“I think if Liverpool buy a centre-back, and a good one, in January, I think they'll take some stopping, I really do,” the former Liverpool defender told Punching.TV .
“Defensively, they have injury problems in that position (centre-back), and if they rectify that in January, I think Liverpool would be my favourites.
“But right now I think it's 50/50 between them and Man City because of Liverpool's injuries and the setback of Van Dijk.”
The two heavyweights played out a 1-1 draw in the last round of fixtures before the international break.
It leaves City five points behind the Reds having played a game less.
Virgil van Dijk could be out for the season
(Image: Getty Images)
But both teams are behind league leaders Leicester and Tottenham, who sit second.
A host of unprecedented factors have made for an unusual start to the season and also bought about some shock results.
Liverpool lost 7-2 at Aston Villa while the Foxes beat City 5-2 at the Etihad.
And Carragher reckons the huge points gap that has existed between teams will not be repeated.
He added: “I just don't think there'll be as big a gap between them (Liverpool and City) and the rest as we've seen in the last couple of years."
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