Lucas Leiva is available for selection today, Jurgen Klopp has confirmed, the Echo reports…
Liverpool take on Stoke at 4pm, but our manager has somewhat of a midfield selection headache with Emre Can suspended for two matches and Jordan Henderson injured.
In central midfield Joe Allen could come in and James Milner could drop back, but Klopp reckons Lucas and Kevin Stewart are also options.
The Brazilian hasn’t played since the League Cup Final defeat v Manchester City, where his heroic performance was unfortunately marred by a penalty miss in the shoot-out which also injured him.
“Thank God Lucas is back and could play 45 minutes yesterday in a test game against Burnley, Kevin Stewart could play 45 minutes in this game also,” Klopp said.
“That was what what we needed, it’s what they needed. So we will have to make a decision but these two players are back and that’s very important for us.
“We have to make a decision about line-up, about systems, about a lot of things but at the end we will have a player in this position.”
Stoke have hardworking players like Gianelli Imbula in the middle, and excellent attackers like Bojan and Xherdan Shaqiri up top – so Liverpool will have to be at our best to keep our minuscule hopes of the top four alive today.
We faced Stoke on the opening day of the season, and Coutinho bagged from 30 yards to confirm victory.
How times have changed since then…
Brendan Rodgers was manager, Jordon Ibe and Martin Skrtel were in the first XI and Jurgen Klopp was still on a sabbatical.
Now, the German has to consider Thursday’s game as well as the Stoke clash. The Europa League is our priority, and we have a fighting chance of semi-final qualification following the 1-1 draw away to Borussia Dortmund.