Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp. Picture: Liverpool FC/ Youtube
Jurgen Klopp has spoken to the media ahead of Liverpool’s Premier League clash against Brighton at Anfield on Saturday (15:00).
Here are the main talking points from the Reds boss’ press conference.
Liverpool have problems in the middle of the park with James Milner already ruled out with a hamstring injury.
Thiago Alcantara (calf) is back in full training but the Brighton clash is likely to come too soon.
Meanwhile, Fabinho will be absent for a third successive game with a knee issue.
However, Klopp expected to welcome back Naby Keita, who was stretchered off in last Sunday’s 5-0 thrashing on Manchester United.
“Naby Keita looks good,” Klopp said. “We were all surprised but he was obviously lucky. I think he will be ready.
“With Fabinho, it doesn’t look that good. It’s a little more complicated, not too complicated but complicated enough to keep him out again. I still wait for the final news but he’s not in team training and that’s never a good sign.
“Thiago was in team training for the first time. We did a session where he could be part of the whole session but it doesn’t mean he’s ready for a football game. He’s closer than last week, much closer and now we have to see what we do with that.
Ibrahima Konate surprisingly came into the starting line-up at Old Trafford alongside Virgil van Dijk.
It meant Joel Matip dropped to the bench, while Joe Gomez featured in the 2-0 Carabao Cup win at Preston on Wednesday.
Klopp has a decision to make about who partners van Dijk against the Seagulls but it’s a situation he welcomes.
He said: “I wouldn’t call it a headache but there are a few decisions I have to make.
“That’s how it is, thank God, it’s always a good sign when you have options. The bad times are when you don’t have options and you have no influence on it.
“There are some, but not too many and it’s always about who in the moment looks the most likely for us to win the game. Those decisions, I’ve made for a few years and hopefully again it’ll be the right one.”
Advice for Gomez
Klopp then went on to discuss Gomez, who is yet to make a start in the Premier League this season after recovering from a long-term knee injury.
“It was always clear we had to bring in a centre-half,” said the Reds boss.
All four, five - because I always have to mention it, Nat Phillips is a top-class centre-half - is not playing as well.
“After the long injury, we decided with Joel and the Ibou came in. We have to deal with Joey, in the beginning especially, with intensity and things like this. We’re not halfway through the season.
“Hopefully no-one gets injured but you have to be on the top of your game when you come in.
“The boys all get on really well and respect each other. Joey’s quality is incredible but we have top-class players in that position and it makes it harder when you’re not in the line-up. The only thing to do is keep working hard.”
A familiar face will be back at Anfield in the Brighton ranks.
Adam Lallana was once a key player for Klopp, helping Liverpool win the Champions League and Premier League before he left for the south coast in the summer of 2020.
The former England international is still someone that Klopp misses having in his team.
The German said: “I miss Adam still, to be honest.
“We obviously don’t have plenty of sessions during the week because we play so often but Adam set the standard from the first to the last day.
“What I loved about him was he was a football player with the technical skills he has and working mentality, which is really rare.
“If Adam had been injured a little less often then he could have still been on another level even though he was already great. One of the best players I’ve ever worked with and an incredible person, I’m really looking forward to seeing him again.”