With results continuing to come in Premier League--today marks three months since Liverpool's last league defeat--it's been easy to forget that Brendan Rodgers' squad has had their fair share of injury concerns and extended absences. Daniel Sturridge's was the most notable, but Rodgers has lost other key squad members over the past few months while still overseeing a period of improved form and results.
Most recently he's had to do without Steven Gerrard, who last featured in the 3-2 win over Spurs back in early February, and Joe Allen and Martin Skrtel joined the captain on the injury list after each suffered a setback in the last week. According to Rodgers, each should be in the running to feature on Monday night at Swansea City, with a pair of other names also back in training:
"Martin had the injury where he had to come off against Blackburn, so all the procedures, in terms of his gradual integration into the group is fine, so he should be available. But we'll monitor that again to make sure that everything is safe and secure with his wellness to play in the game, but he should be fine.
"Jose Enrique has been in and out of training, so we'll monitor him over the next couple of games. Great news - young Jon Flanagan is back and training with the group, which is great, but again we're just having to gradually introduce him into the training.
"We had Steven back training, which is great. Joe Allen is back and fit and well, so the [injured players] are starting to return."
Of the three, there will be most of the concern about Skrtel, who was unconscious for a brief spell after hitting the ground in the 3rd minute against Blackburn. With Kolo Toure and Mamadou Sakho back and Emre Can freed up to return to defense, there's no reason to rush with the Slovakian, though news of a quick recovery is obviously welcomed. Rodgers' comments don't necessarily indicate that Skrtel comes straight back into the squad, and with worries about his longer-term health after such a scary injury, caution is justified.
Allen's layoff was brief in nature and should allow for a more rapid restoration in the starting eleven, however, and Gerrard is likely to start off the bench after a far longer period in the stands.