Jurgen Klopp has issued a lengthy news update on Liverpool injuries, as key players remain out and issues continue to pile up for the German coach.
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Following his outburst against broadcasters and the Premier League schedule after dropping two points late on at Brighton on Saturday, Klopp was slightly more subdued when discussing injury issues with journalists ahead of their UEFA Champions League group stage clash with Ajax on Tuesday.
Klopp revealed that James Milner is now out injured, while Thiago Alcantara is expected to remain out for many more weeks.
“Thiago we have to maybe clarify it a little bit. On that day when Thiago got injured in that challenge in the Everton game, there was another bad injury [to Virgil van Dijk] and after the scans it was like one was really bad news and the other one was really good news because nothing was broken, nothing was ruptured and stuff like this,” Klopp said.
“But, as we realize now, it was still a massive impact on the knee. The problem is in a situation like that, nothing is ruptured and nothing is broken and that means everybody thinks, ‘OK, you can go after a few days’, but the impact on the leg was that big that it is still not OK. It is not massive and he trains from time to time, not in the moment because we just have to realise that we have to go a few further steps. I can’t say exactly when he will be fine, but it will take a few weeks still with Thiago.”
So, that seems like Thiago is out for the next few weeks, at least, and that isn’t where the Liverpool injuries end.
As for Milner, he was injured in the draw at Brighton as he suffered a hamstring injury, while Trent Alexander-Arnold, Xherdan Shaqiri and Naby Keita are all making progress.
“They are all getting closer to being back, [but] not close enough for tomorrow, I think,” Klopp said of the latest Liverpool injuries. “With Naby we have to check there still, but with the other two, they will not be ready. Trent looks quite good, but nobody gave me the green light for tonight so he will not be in it [training]. He hasn’t trained with the team and stuff like this.
“I saw him today on the pitch doing his rehab stuff outside, so that looks already good, but I cannot decide when this rehab stuff is finished. I take the players only in the moment when I get the green light and that didn’t happen yet. But from my rather experienced eye from what I saw today, it will not be that long anymore with Trent.”
Getting Alexander-Arnold will be a big boost, as Klopp had three players in the right back position on Saturday. First, youngster Neco Williams lined up there but was replaced at half time as James Milner slotted back from midfield. Then when Milner got injured, substitute Curtis Jones (an attacking midfielder) ended up playing at right back.
With center backs Joe Gomez and Virgil van Dijk already out for the season with long-term knee injuries, all of these small problems are adding up for Klopp. That being said, Liverpool are in second in the table and are in a good position in the UEFA Champions League ahead of Ajax arriving.