Liverpool will make the short journey across Stanley Park to take on Merseyside rivals Everton this weekend.
Carlo Ancelotti’s team come into the clash in pulsating form following a perfect start to the 2020/21 season which currently sees them sat top of the Premier League.
Jurgen Klopp’s reigning English champions meanwhile, enter the contest off the back of their biggest defeat in over 50 years following their 7-2 capitulation at the hands of Aston Villa before the international break.
With the players scheduled to return from their national team duties later this week, we take a look at who will and will not be available for the all-important derby at the weekend.
Who is available?
Having made his Liverpool debut against Chelsea in a stunning 45-minute cameo at Stamford Bridge last month, Thiago was unfortunately dealt a setback having tested positive for Covid-19 just days after his inaugural PL bout. He has since self-isolated and has been confirmed as in contention to start against Everton.
The Senegalese superstar was another to fall victim to the virus and subsequently was forced to quarantine during the international break. Along with Thiago, Mane too has since returned to training and should be available for selection.
Another first-team star who has been riddled by injury in recent months and is someone who has clocked up just three PL appearances over the course of 12 months.
Matip, 29, has featured for the Reds for just one solitary minute since he suffered a knee injury at Goodison Park back in June.
However, the Cameroonian defender is expected to return to training at some point this week and is another who could be available for selection on Saturday.
Liverpool assistant Pep Lijnders confirmed recently the defender was on the road to recovery and should be available for the Everton fixture.
“Joel [Matip] is the same as what I said last week, he will be ready [after] the international break and use the time to prepare the Everton game,” he said.
Liverpool’s club-captain managed over an hour of action during England’s 2-1 Nations League victory against Belgium at the weekend having recovered from a thigh problem sustained at Stamford Bridge.
Speaking with Liverpool’s official website, Henderson said: “At the minute I feel physically very good and feel I am at a good part of my career in terms of the balance of experience I’ve had in the last 10 years but also I feel very strong.”
The Greek left-back picked up a thigh problem during the 7-2 win against Lincoln and has been sidelined since. He should be available for selection against Everton and could still make the bench as cover for Andy Robertson.
The Switzerland international is the victim of a bizarre case after receiving a false positive test for Covid-19. Shaqiri seemed to be yet another Liverpool player to fall victim to the virus, but it has since turned out it was a previous infection and the anti-bodies were still present.
He was named on the bench for Switzerland’s Nations League defeat to Spain last week.
Who is set to miss out?
The Guinean talisman became Liverpool’s fourth player to test positive Covid-19 in just a few weeks meaning Keita, unfortunately, will have to self isolate and miss the Merseyside derby.
Sadly for Liverpool fans, Alisson still remains Liverpool’s big injury miss and the Brazilian isn’t expected to be back until mid-November following a shoulder injury picked up in training. Adrian is expected to retain his place despite shipping in seven goals against Villa.
Oxlade-Chamberlain suffered a knee injury prior to the Community Shield defeat against Arsenal back in August and his fitness struggles continue. There still may be some time before he’s back to full fitness and will almost certainly miss the Merseyside derby.