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Last Updated: Wednesday, 5 January, 2005, 08:34 GMT
Kirkland setback rocks Liverpool
Liverpool goalkeeper Chris Kirkland
Liverpool's injury problems have grown after reports that goalkeeper Chris Kirkland faces a back operation that could sideline him for three months.

The Daily Mail says Kirkland, 23, who recently lost his first-team place, will undergo keyhole surgery on Friday.

If this is the case, he is unlikely to return before the end of March.

Liverpool only have 20-year-old Paul Harrison as back-up for keeper Jerzy Dudek, but have been linked with a move for Leeds' Scott Carson.

Kirkland's career has been blighted by injuries since he joined Liverpool from Coventry for 6m in 2001.

Last season he only played 12 times, breaking a finger and a wrist, and he has yet to play for England despite being called up to the squad several times.

He becomes the latest name added to a lengthy liverpool injury list that includes Harry Kewell (groin), Milan Baros (hamstring) and long-term injury victims Vladimir Smicer (knee) and Djibril Cisse (broken leg).

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