Oxlade-Chamberlain ruled out of World Cup

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain had been in fine form for club and country but he is now ruled out of England's 2018 World Cup campaign.

Liverpool midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain   -  Getty Images

Liverpool and England midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will miss the 2018 World Cup after the Premier League club confirmed he has suffered knee ligament damage.

Oxlade-Chamberlain was substituted after 18 minutes of Liverpool's emphatic 5-2 Champions League semi-final first-leg win over Roma at Anfield on Tuesday, following a challenge with visiting wing-back Aleksandar Kolarov.

The 24-year-old, who joined Liverpool from Arsenal in August, has become an integral part of Jurgen Klopp's side over recent months and started both of England's March friendlies against Netherlands and Italy.

However, a statement from Liverpool confirmed his season for club and country is now over.

"The extent of the injury means Oxlade-Chamberlain is set to miss the remainder of the campaign for Liverpool, as well as the World Cup finals in Russia with England," the statement read.

"The 24-year-old was assessed by the club’s medical team at Melwood on Wednesday morning and no specific timescale is being placed upon his return to action at this stage.

"However, Oxlade-Chamberlain will now begin a rehabilitation programme to enable him to reach full fitness again as soon as possible, returning to action next season."

After a virtuoso display from Mohamed Salah inspired Liverpool to victory over Roma, Klopp conceded he felt Oxlade-Chamberlain's injury was serious – fears that have now unfortunately been realised.

"Oxlade-Chamberlain's is probably a really bad injury," the German told BT Sport.

"If you can say that before the scan, it's never good news. That's a massive blow for us.

"We have still a few very important games to go and the squad doesn't get any bigger at the moment. We need obviously to be creative in the next few games."

England begin their World Cup campaign against Tunisia on June 18.

Manchester City left-back Benjamin Mendy, who returned to action at the weekend after missing the bulk of this season with cruciate ligament damage, tweeted Oxlade-Chamberlain with a message of consolation and encouragement.

"Bro, sorry to hear that," he wrote. "Wishing you a good recovery. Come back stronger."

Liverpool lie third in the Premier League with three games remaining – three points above Tottenham having played a game more.

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