John Barnes is in favour of Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool making a move for Watford attacker Ismaila Sarr in the long-term but insists the Anfield outfit need a centre-half more urgently.

The Reds have suffered multiple injuries at the back in recent months, leaving the Liverpool manager with limited options at the back.

Joe Gomez and Virgil van Dijk are both likely to miss a large portion of the campaign after being sidelined with serious knee problems.

Meanwhile, the club’s only other senior centre-back, Joel Matip, has also continued to suffer with fitness woes.

Klopp has had to deploy midfielders Jordan Henderson and Fabinho in his backline, while inexperienced pair Nat Phillips and Rhys Williams have also been called upon.

In spite of their injury issues, Klopp has admitted that signing a centre-back in January is ‘unlikely’.

Last summer, Liverpool were linked with winger Ismaila, who impressed in the Premier League in the 2019/20 term despite Watford’s relegation to the EFL Championship.

While Barnes believes targeting the Senegal international would be worthwhile in the future, Sarr insisted that strengthening at centre-back must be the priority for his former club Liverpool.

When asked if an approach for Ismaila should be made, John told BonusCodeBets: ‘Yes, if he wanted to be one of the front three, but, and I’ve said this before, we need a centre-back.

‘Although a great player and looking forward he’d be fantastic player to have as part of the team, it’s not what we need at this very moment in time.

‘If they want to sign him as a long-term investment, then I think that’s great. But right now, this very season, we need to strengthen our defence so to find suitable players for this should be the priority.’