Centre-backs Joe Gomez and Joël Matip have both missed the festive period due to injuries. Gomez fractured his left leg against Burnley in the beginning of December, while Matip had surgery on a collarbone fractured when Liverpool secured passage into the Champions League group stages against Napoli.
Both players have been missed in the heavy festive period when Klopp could afford to rest neither Virgil van Dijk nor Dejan Lovren. While the two players are not yet ready to return, Klopp confirmed that both have been making progress.
“[Joe is] getting better, it’s getting better, but he is not yet involved,” Klopp said.
“Joël is maybe a bit closer, I’m not sure, but hopefully he moves completely normal. We have to see how the bone healing is, that’s always how it is when something [has] broke, but from his movements it looks nearly normal.
“But there are still a few days to go until we can have them in team training, until [Joël] is ready for contact, which for a centre-half is pretty important. Until then we will make all the fitness work.
“The good thing is Joël can do all the fitness work already since a week or so ago, so that means when he will be back he will be 100 per cent fit. Then he has to get rhythm and everything will be fine.”
So it appears that Matip is closer to rehabilitation than Gomez, which was expected. Neither should be rushed, because hopefully when they return, they remain fit for the rest of Liverpool’s FA Cup, European, and league races.