Liverpool have tallied up a distressingly lengthy injury list over the October international break, with Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mané, Virgil van Dijk, James Milner, and Naby Keïta all picking up or revealing injuries.
Five potential starters against Huddersfield on Saturday who all, potentially, might not be able to play. For the most part, though, news has been trending in the right direction in the past few days—just not in the case of Keïta.
After having to be carried off the pitch by a teammate against Rwanda in Guinea’s Africa Cup of Nations qualifier, Keïta returned to Liverpool today and has been sent to undergo a scan on his hamstring.
With that, any hope that the midfielder would be fit by the weekend disappeared, and even if the results turn up nothing worse than a minor strain it’s likely he will miss a week or two of action and a couple of games.
If the results are bad, of course, it could be a lot longer. Keïta, though, is a near certainty not to be available to face Huddersfield on the weekend or Red Star mid-week. Elsewhere, at least, the signs are a little more positive.
Salah suffered a minor thigh strain and returned to Liverpool as a largely precautionary measure, and while he could be rested against Huddersfield, no scan was required and as of now there is no long-term injury concern.
Meanwhile, Mané suffered a broken thumb, an injury that will not be expected to force him to miss any time, and Van Dijk has been dealing with his issue—broken ribs—since the match against Paris Saint-Germain.
Then there’s Milner, who previously retired from international football but still managed to pick up a knock in training with the club over the international break, but he has already been ruled fit to face Huddersfield.