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Injured Liverpool Centre Half Joël Matip Returns to Training

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Despite the good news, a return to action before the end of the current season remains unlikely.

Liverpool Training Session Photo by John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images

With just five games left in an exhausting 2020-21 season that sees Liverpool stuck in sixth after a pair of poor results, it might be too late to salvage much of anything from a difficult, injury-stricken campaign for Jürgen Klopp’s Reds.

For those in need of a bit of good news, though, there was today’s return to individual on-pitch training for Joël Matip, who by doing so took the lead over fellow injured defenders Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez in his recovery efforts.

The bad news is that even still, Matip remains a doubt to play again this season—as with Van Dijk, a return to full fitness at some point following the Reds’ final game of the season against Crystal Palace on May 23rd remains likeliest.

At that point, it will be an open question what comes next for Matip and Liverpool. The player’s talents are undeniable, but so too is his concerning injury record, and if Ibrahima Konaté signs as expected it could be he will move on.

In other injured Liverpool defender news, UEFA have decided countries will be able to name expanded squads—up to 26 players—for the Euros, which could lead to Van Dijk being included for the Netherlands even if he isn’t 100% fit.