Daniel Sturridge collided with Jordon Ibe in training ahead of Liverpool's match with Tottenham on October 17th. He was kept out for, it was said at the time, precautionary reasons and expected to only be sidelined for a day or two. He was expected back to face FC Sion in Europe the following Thursday.
Nearly two weeks later, the striker still hasn't returned to training, and he has been officially ruled out of facing Bournemouth in the Capital One Cup on Wednesday. He is almost certain to miss Chelsea on the weekend, too, and there are growing concerns that it could be much longer than that before Sturridge is again available.
"There is nothing really new on this," Jürgen Klopp said at his pre-match press conference today. "Daniel's not available for tomorrow. It's getting better, but not quick enough to change the situation. He's not in training yet. I saw him five minutes ago working in the gym, but he's not ready to think about normal football training."
That he's even in the gym, though, is perhaps a positive sign following rumours that he could be out indefinitely as the medical staff were struggling to even identify the root cause of his knee troubles. Still, whenever he does return, few Liverpool fans will be willing to count on the oft-injured striker staying fit the rest of the way.
Sturridge managed just 17 appearances last season—12 of them in the league—as he struggled with a string of related injuries. After undergoing surgery that was supposed to have solved the underlying issue, so far this year he has made just two appearances for the club, both in the league. It's a record that makes for grim reading.
Since arriving at Liverpool in January of 2013, Sturridge has missed more than 300 days and 55 games due to injury. And while Sturridge won't be playing on Wednesday, a few other Liverpool players could join him on the sidelines as Klopp looks to avoid wearing out some of his key starters by rotating in a few fringe players.
"It's my first time playing in this cup, so it's a very important game to me," said the manager. "But I know we had three games in the last eight or nine games, so now we have to change. We have suspended players in Milner, we have injured players, players with little problems we're not going to risk so we will see.
"We will see who can train today, who can train tomorrow, and then we can make a team with for sure at least a young player or two, but not because this is not an important cup for me. No. I really want to win, and so this is why we change. I want to win. I don't want to give up before we have to. That's pretty easy for me."