Liverpool Team News: Klopp Confirms Midfielder Blow + Sturridge/Coutinho Updates
Jurgen Klopp has confirmed one of his midfielders is facing a spell on the sidelines while he’s also given an update on Daniel Sturridge and Philippe Coutinho.
Liverpool will look to get their season back on track when they take on rock bottom Aston Villa at Villa Park on Sunday afternoon.
Ahead of the game, Jurgen Klopp has been speaking to the media at his pre-match press conference today and he’s given a team news and injury update.
Unfortunately, the German coach confirmed that midfielder Joe Allen has suffered a muscle injury and is now facing a lengthy spell on the sidelines.
Allen has been in fine form in recent weeks and was hoping to force his way in to Klopp’s starting eleven on a regular basis but the Welshman was forced off at half-time during last weekend’s 2-2 draw with Sunderland is has now been ruled out ‘for a while’.
Klopp told Liverpoolfc.com:
“Joe unfortunately is out for a while. I think he is a good example: he was in a good way – a really good way – and we tried to manage playing time after his injury when I came here.
“Then he was in good shape, got a little knock on the shoulder, played against Sunderland and I think in the perfect moment of his shape, the muscle stops. Not because of intensity, only because this is how it is.
“In an ideal world you have a long-term pre-season, then play without injuries and nothing will happen. But I think we have to wait a little bit for him, it’s a muscle thing.”
While it will come as a blow to lose Allen, overall, Liverpool’s injury problems have been easing in recent weeks with Daniel Sturridge, Philippe Coutinho and Divock Origi all making their long-awaited comebacks against West Ham in midweek.
Coutinho started in the FA Cup replay and got a useful 55 minutes under his belt having overcome a hamstring injury, while Origi was introduced as a second half substitute after recovering from his own hamstring complaint.
Sturridge made his first appearance of 2016 off the bench at Upton Park after finally getting himself fit following another frustrating injury-plagued campaign and Klopp says while it’s great news to have the trio available again, he needs to carefully manage their minutes over the coming games.
He continues to tell the clubs website:
“Of course, it’s very important [that they’re back]. When you come back it is completely normal that you don’t come back in your best shape, your 100 per cent best career shape, so you need to come in. It’s not that now they have come back we will bring them all together and see how far they can go.
“The positive view on the situation is that they are back – that’s really good – but they have to manage the minutes, that’s how it is.
“Phil, because he played a little bit less – it was 55 minutes at West Ham – has had the normal sessions with the team that didn’t play, but all of them are in a good way and for us it’s great news.”
“He [Sturridge] played around about 70 minutes at West Ham, so he had normal recovery afterwards in training. With less minutes he could have trained a little bit more, but he was involved in all the things with the players who played the full time against West Ham, like Divock Origi too.
“So it was good, he feels good and I have heard nothing else. Of course, we have to think about how we can manage the minutes and things like this, but he has made a big step in the last week.”
It’s unlikely that Sturridge will be risked from the start against Aston Villa on Sunday but we could see Coutinho keep his place in attack if he’s fully recovered from the West Ham game.
Liverpool head to Villa Park this weekend in desperate need of a win after letting slip two vital points against Sunderland last Saturday, which left them sitting ninth in the table and a full 12 points adrift of the top four.
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