It’s easier to just keep Liverpool’s injury situation behind a closed door, never to be seen or discussed amongst civilized society. It’s often full of grim tales of pulls and strains, aches and pains and the nearly forgotten with their long-term suffering. In all likelihood, Nathaniel Clyne’s best hope of returning to the pitch with Liverpool is the 2018/19 preseason. The England fullback is riding the rollercoaster of recovery right now and Jürgen Klopp has confirmed that Clyne’s back injury has met with complications.
But occasionally this door that hides the gloom opens up and releases a Liverpool player back out into the world, fresh from injury and ready to give a boost to the squad. Warning: It’s not Philippe Coutinho.
“Phil is not available,” confirmed Klopp.
“With the rest it’s really close.
“Gini, not sure. We have to see. It’s painful what he has. But maybe he can cope with it. We have to see.”
Keeping Wijnaldum in the side would be an unexpected boost to Liverpool’s line-up against West Ham on Saturday. The Dutchman left the Anfield pitch with an ankle injury during the last meeting with Maribor. It didn’t look good. The manager remarked that it didn’t look good. But the above statement seems to suggest that after a scan the ankle doesn’t exactly look bad either.
Dejan Lovren could also be available for selection. Klopp, clearly wants to get the Croatian defender back out onto the pitch to purge the bad juju that Lovren has let amass around him lately. But that decision is still up in the air.
“Dejan, maybe today is the clearing session,” said Klopp. “In weeks like this we have to wait until the last second to make the squad or the line-up. So, that’s how it is this week again.”
But the really surprising news has to do with Sadio Mané and his sturdy return to first team training yesterday. Mané looked to be a player who hasn’t lost a step during his injury break, running hard, scoring goals and being as Sadio as possible.
“Sadio trained yesterday,” said Klopp with obvious glee. “First time with the team. He looked really, really good. We’ll see what we do with that.
“After yesterday, it looks like he’s ready for at least 20-25 minutes but we have to wait to see how his body reacts to the session.”
A twenty minute cameo from Mané would be excellent to see on Saturday. So much of what Liverpool do well going forward involves Sadio’s running into space and his ability in the final third.
The Senegalese forward has been included on his national team’s roster for the next international break. And Klopp will want to impart to the Senegalese coaches his hope that they don’t throw caution to the wide with our Sadio. But the fact remains, Mané is fit and available to play. Happy Friday.