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Sturridge and Coutinho Ruled Out for Watford Clash

Liverpool will start the 2017-18 season in the midst of a minor injury crisis.

Watford v Liverpool - Premier League Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images

Liverpool are in desperate need of a few more signings before the transfer window closes, and failing to do that would set the club up to struggle if they ever run into a slew of injuries. As if to drive that point home, they’re set to start the season in the midst of a minor injury crisis.

Midfielder Adam Lallana has been ruled out for three months already, and while they won’t be gone for nearly as long as he is, Nathaniel Clyne, Daniel Sturridge, and Philippe Coutinho will be joining him on the sidelines for at least the season opener against Watford on Saturday.

Clyne missed the entire pre-season and has yet to return to training, meaning he will be unlikely to feature for at least a the first few weeks. Even in the best case scenario, he is unlikely to play a significant role in either of the club’s first two league games or in their Champions League playoff.

The news is slightly better for Sturridge and Coutinho. Neither participated in training today and are not expected to feature on the weekend, but a return in time to face Hoffenheim on Tuesday is possible. And there is at least some good news for Jürgen Klopp in Jordan Henderson.

The Liverpool captain returned to training today and is expected to be ready to go on the weekend, making Klopp’s midfield selection relatively easy—Henderson will be expected to anchor from the six while Emre Can pushes up into a shuttling role across from Gini Wijnaldum.

In Sturridge’s absence the attack also picks itself, with Roberto Firmino expected to start between Sadio Mané and Mohamed Salah. That’s all well and good for Watford, of course, but Liverpool are now one injury away from playing the kids—and the season hasn’t even started.

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