Liverpool fell short of the Premier League title by just one point to Manchester City on Sunday, despite defeating Wolves 3-1 at Anfield, but now they will look to produce the perfect response by lifting the UEFA Champions League title on Saturday.
Jurgen Klopp has had a fantastic array of options at his disposal to choose from this season, yet he was missing three players over the weekend, while a crucial fourth was added to that list just six days before their Paris showdown with Real Madrid for another European title.
Here is all you need to know about the current state of play at Anfield and the expected return dates for those out injured on the sidelines.
Thiago was rested against Southampton last week before he was thrown into the starting lineup for the visit of Wolves on Sunday, and despite registering an assist for Liverpool ’s equaliser, the midfielder was hauled off at half-time after picking up a calf injury.
It has come at the worst possible time for the midfielder, with the Champions League final this weekend, while it represents even more of a nightmare for Klopp who also has Fabinho on the injury list ahead of the game. As things stand, Thiago may well miss the clash in Paris with Real Madrid due to the severity of his injury.
Following the victory over Wolves on Sunday, Klopp said: “I think he’ll be out of the final but I don’t know. He’s limping, so it’s maybe not the best sign.”
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Brazilian midfielder Fabinho has been out of action since picking up a thigh injury during the 2-1 victory away to Aston Villa on May 10, in which he lasted just 30 minutes of the contest and has since missed the Reds’ last three fixtures. However, it is fully expected that he will have recovered in time to feature in Saturday’s all-important Champions League final.
There were initial fears that the Brazilian midfielder could be ruled out for the remainder of the season, but following the FA Cup final triumph on May 14, Fabinho said himself that he is “very confident” that he’ll be available to feature in Paris, while Klopp has also confirmed that he has returned to first-team training this week.
Following the victory over Wolves on Sunday, Klopp said: “Fab is training but not with us yet. But he will start at the beginning of the next week.”
Defender Joe Gomez had to be substituted during half-time of last Tuesday’s victory at Southampton, in which he picked up an ankle problem and became a doubt for the remainder of the season, and has already missed Sunday’s victory over Wolves.
The 24-year-old has been fourth-choice centre back on Merseyside this season but was given the opportunity to impress at right back during that Saints win, before injury ended that early. However, he has since had a scan on his ankle and Liverpool are confident that he will be fit for the Champions League final on May 28.
Speaking ahead of the Wolves game on May 20, Klopp said: “If it’s fine then it’s about pain, how can you deal with pain, and then we will see what Joe can do today or tomorrow. But I don’t know in the moment.”
Belgian striker Divock Origi will be leaving Liverpool at the end of the season and he would have hoped to have a final appearance from the bench before his departure, until he picked up an injury in the final training session before Sunday’s game against Wolves last week.
It couldn’t have gone worse for the forward, who was forced to withdraw from the first team squad against Wolves in his final Anfield farewell over the weekend, before Klopp confirmed that he is set to definitely be out of the Champions League final in Paris on Saturday, too.
Following the victory over Wolves on Sunday, Klopp said: “Div is definitely out for the final because he [got] injured in the last second of the last session yesterday.”