Liverpool have been handed a fitness boost ahead of their monumental Premier League clash with Manchester City, captain Jordan Henderson recovering from illness and returning to first-team training.

Henderson was forced to sit out of the club's narrow 2-1 Champions League victory over Genk in midweek after a review was made by the Reds' medical staff, but his availability is likely to see him return to the starting lineup for Sunday's potentially pivotal encounter.

Sitting six points above City at the ​Premier League's summit, the outcome of the Anfield showdown could have serious implications towards the title race, with the possibility of ​Liverpool racing into a nine-point advantage, while equally Pep Guardiola's side could cut the gap to just three points.

As revealed by ​The Times, Henderson's return from a bug will provide a welcome boost to Jurgen Klopp, who is likely to thrust the Sunderland-born player into the starting XI. So far this season, Henderson has missed just one top-flight match, featuring in every other game and netting once.

While his influence on the side may not result in goal contributions, it will be a welcome return for the 29-year-old who has also established himself as an England regular throughout his eight years on Merseyside.

Ahead of the mouth-watering fixture, Guardiola tried his best at stirring the pot with some mind-games - something that has become commonplace in such match-ups - by suggesting star forward Sadio Mane was a 'diver'.

He has ​since backtracked on those claims, but not before Mane's teammate Georginio Wijnaldum had his say on the matter.

He said: "How many players of ours have had a yellow card for diving? Sadio was the first [this season], I think, so to say that we are divers is a little bit strange.”

While Liverpool have raced into an unbeaten start to the Premier League, dropping only two points so far, ​City have been less cut-throat, already losing twice in their 11 league matches to date, adding increased importance on Sunday's showdown.

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