When Liverpool face off against Leicester City on Friday in their second Premier League match following the restart of the season, Jürgen Klopp expects to have the same team available to him that faced Aston Villa earlier in the week with one key addition.
That addition will be Ibrahima Konaté, the French centre half who was key to his country’s run to the World Cup final earlier in the month and who, after a brief break following France’s final defeat, re-joined training with his Liverpool teammates earlier this week.
“No new injury problems,” was Klopp’s reply when asked about fitness and availability. “Not that a lot would come back apart from Ibou. He is now training with us so will be available now as well. It is positive for this moment but we know it will be a tough game.”
That means that while Konaté will be in contention, it is unlikely that Roberto Firmino, Curtis Jones, or James Milner will be available for the final Liverpool match of 2022—though that trio are expected to potentially all be available to face Brentford on January 2nd.
Luis Diaz, Diogo Jota, and Arthur Melo remain long-term absences, while there is a chance new signing Cody Gakpo will be registered in time for Brentford on the 2nd. However, Klopp suggested Wolves on the 7th of the month in the FA Cup is more likely for his debut.
“There might be a chance for Brentford but not really I think because of all the papers and the bank holiday,” Klopp said when asked when £37M attacking signing Gakpo might make his Liverpool debut. “But we will not rush him, so probably Wolves is more likely.”