Jurgen Klopp gives Liverpool team news for Man City clash as World Cup stars return
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has ruled Virgil van Dijk out of the club’s Carabao Cup fourth round tie against Manchester City next week, but could play Jordan Henderson and Trent Alexander-Arnold.
The Reds only sent seven players to the World Cup, with Mohamed Salah’s Egypt and Andrew Robertson’s Scotland failing to qualify, Roberto Firmino left out by Brazil and Thiago Alcantara overlooked by Spain, and Joel Matip having retired from international football.
It has meant a relatively full Liverpool squad, compared to other Premier League sides and European giants, were left behind to train. Quarter-finals exits for Netherlands and England also sent Van Dijk, Henderson and Alexander-Arnold home sooner than expected.
“There's a chance, of course – they train already," Klopp said of the possibility that the trio could feature against City on Thursday.
Henderson was on the bench for England’s first two games in Qatar but started the latter three against Wales, Senegal and France. Alexander-Arnold played just 33 minutes in the whole tournament, all of which came against Wales.
Van Dijk, meanwhile, played every minute for Netherlands, which is why he is not likely to return to action for Liverpool until after Christmas.
"Hendo is already training here. Virg is training here but I don't think we will try that. Hendo we will see, Trent we will see,” Klopp explained. “But this group worked now together for nearly two weeks and we made a real step and that's cool. I don't know in this moment.
“I hope we all get through it and we all know in England, and in Europe in general, there's kind of a virus going around, so we hope we can stay out of that. Then we will make the decision obviously on Wednesday who can play on Thursday. But it's good and will be a very interesting game after that period but I'm looking forward to it.”
Liverpool’s first Premier League following the conclusion of the World Cup will be away against Aston Villa on Boxing Day evening.
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