Liverpool injury update as Klopp makes ‘unfortunate’ Ralf Rangnick admission ahead of Man Utd appointment

The key talking point from Jurgen Klopp’s pre-Southampton press conference.

Jurgen Klopp has been speaking to the media ahead of Liverpool’s clash with Southampton at Anfield on Saturday.

Here are the key talking points from the Reds manager’s press conference.

Injury update

Liverpool’s problems are beginning to ease.

Jordan Henderson (groin) and James Milner (hamstring) both came off the bench in the 2-0 win over Porto on Wednesday.

Diogo Jota was left unused after suffering a knee knock in the 4-0 thrashing of Arsenal last weekend but should be involved against the Saints.

Curtis Jones (eye), Naby Keita (hamstring) and Harvey Elliott (ankle) are all absent but Klopp’s happy to have options back in the engine room with Henderson and Milner back.

The Reds boss said: “For now, it’s much better. Ten days ago, we pretty much had two-and-a-half midfielders. We could use the Porto game to give some minutes and some rest.

“Now, for the first time for a while, I have to make some decisions - which is actually cool.

“For the moment, it’s better than it was two weeks ago, definitely.”

‘A good coach is coming to England’

Jurgen Klopp, left, and Ralf Rangnick. Picture: BARTEK WRZESNIOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images

Ralf Rangnick is closing in on being appointed Manchester United’s new manager.

The German is a pioneer of modern coaching and known as the ‘Godfather of gegenpressing’.

He’s said to have had a profound influence on Klopp’s style of football which has brought him so much success in his career.

Klopp’s wary that a ‘good coach’ is taking the Old Trafford hot seat.

He said: “It’s tricky. Usually we don’t talk about things if they’re not confirmed. If you tell me it’ll happen I might believe you.

“Unfortunately a good coach is coming to England, to Manchester United. Ralf is a really experienced manager, built two clubs from nowhere to proper threats and forces in Germany with Hoffenheim and Leipzig.

“His first concern is being a coach and manager and that’s his best skill. United will be organised and we should realise that and that’s obviously not good news for other teams.

“All coaches need time to train and Ralf we realise he doesn’t have that as we have to play all of the time, which will make it trickier.

“An outstanding man and outstanding coach. He’s very highly regarded. Where he was, he did incredible jobs.”

Southampton challenge

Southampton sit 13th in the table but are expected to offer a stiff challenge for Liverpool.

Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side held Manchester City to a frustrating goalless draw at the Etihad earlier this season.

Klopp knows the Reds will have to be at their attacking best to break down the visitors.

He said: “Ralph is organising a proper team there for each game, especially when they don’t expect to have the majority of possession.

“It’s a 4-4-2, really well organised and well-drilled team. You need to be creative to break them down. They don’t concede a lot of shots on target.

“We know about the job and what we have to do. The big advantage is they didn’t play midweek and we did.

“We always say Wedensday-Saturday is not the best rhythm but we have to be as refreshed and recovered as possible and be ready for a proper fight.”

Thiago’s importance

Thiago Alcantara celebrates Liverpool’s opening goal against Porto. Picture: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Thiago Alcantara netted a screamer to open the scoring against Porto.

The midfielder has quality in abundance but has struggled to stay fit since arriving from Bayern Munich in September 2020.

Klopp’s hoping to manage Thiago carefully so he can find the rhythm required to continue making a marked impact.

“Thiago is an incredible player but we have found solutions when he’s not available and have to find solutions,” added Klopp.

It’s not about one player out or in. Just talking about midfielders, we have an incredible choice there.

“Thiago has a very specific skillset and is very helpful when he has rhythm and that’s the challenge we face - so he can gain rhythm but not over do it.

“We took him off (against Porto) to not get too tired and injuries might happen. We have a similar thing to do with Ox (Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain), others come back from injury, Fabinho came back with a really bad stomach so left him out and played only 25 minutes.”