Liverpool hero picks out a benefactor from potential Sakho ban

Liverpool’s Mamadou Sakho faces a lengthy ban after failing a drugs test.

Former Liverpool player Phil Thompson says a potential Mamadou Sakho ban would give fellow defender Martin Skrtel the opportunity to reclaim a regular first-team spot, Sky Sports report.

France international Sakho faces a lengthy ban from football after shockingly failing a drugs test.

The defender has been a key player for Jurgen Klopp over the past few months, and his potential absence will be felt as his influence on the side has been growing considerably of late.

But Thompson feels there is one silver lining to be come out of the ordeal - fellow defender Martin Skrtel.

“In footballing terms, Sakho will be a big miss. He's had his ups and downs but I think everybody has responded to his passion and commitment when it comes to defending and his influence has been massive,” Thompson told Sky Sports.

"It will be a big loss but I think it gives Skrtel a chance to get back in the side, potentially until the end of the season if it goes badly for Sakho."

Skrtel lost his place in the Reds’ first-team eleven after spending a spell on the side-lines with injury.

The Slovakia international has long been considered one of the club’s most influential figures, yet the 31-year-old has managed just 19 Premier League appearances this season.

After suffering a lengthy injury during the defeat at Watford, Skrtel has featured just twice in the league for Liverpool and he has a battle on his hands to rediscover his top form for the club.

Register for LIVERPOOL team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch