Jurgen Klopp has pointed out again that he’s unprepared to take risks with Philippe Coutinho’s injury and admitted that it’s unlikely the Brazilian will appear against Manchester City on New Year’s Eve.
After encouraging steps forward in his rehabilitation, Coutinho was tipped for an early return to face Manchester City in a special comeback on New Year’s Eve at Anfield. The likelihood of the comeback has been called into question after Klopp has mentioned in his last two pressers that the Brazilian is not near enough full fitness and that Liverpool won’t be taking any risks.
It comes as a knock, especially with Manchester City showing in fits and bursts that they can return to form and with a crucial 2-1 win over Arsenal last week, the Citizen will be confident of their chances when they travel to Merseyside. Their prospects will be improved by Coutinho’s absence.
Speaking to the media ahead of Liverpool’s Premier League fixture against Stoke City, Jurgen Klopp said, “The game everyone is thinking of is Man City for Philippe – a rehab for a pro is always on the edge. It’s not impossible but unlikely.
“Coutinho is not in training and he cannot rush, it was a serious injury and we need to wait, we cannot rush the situation.”
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Klopp’s patience with injuries is a recurring theme with his measured and understanding approach to the types of injuries that Daniel Sturridge is prone to very impressive. Even though Liverpool will need to contend without Coutinho, the likes of Mane, Firmino, Origi and Sturridge are more than capable of bearing the weight of the attacking responsibility.