Jurgen Klopp admits Jordan Henderson is sorely missed by Liverpool when unavailable to play.
The Reds skipper has seemingly recovered from the hamstring injury that has seen him sidelined since last month’s 1-0 win over Huddersfield.
Henderson missed both Champions League meetings with Red Star Belgrade in his spell out of action, as well as the Premier League encounters with Cardiff and Arsenal.
His absence was particularly notable in both the draw at the Emirates and the defeat in Belgrade, in which Liverpool seriously lacked leadership and intensity.
Klopp has now welcomed Henderson’s return to fitness ahead of Sunday’s clash with Fulham at Anfield.
“When Jordan is not available we always miss him,” the German told Liverpoolfc.com.
“I would love to say Hendo would have changed the whole game [vs. Red Star Belgrade], but I am not really sure about it, the whole game was kind of strange and not us or whatever and the game before was Arsenal.”
“That was actually an absolutely OK game but we only have to admit, and maybe a few people were surprised, that Arsenal are a good football team.”
It need only a look back at Liverpool’s last two outings to recognise just how important the Englishman is to Klopp’s system and approach.
Besides setting the tone with his work ethic and intensity as a lead retriever of the ball, he is pivotal in injecting the kind of urgency on the ball so key to the Reds’ counterattacking threat.
Klopp’s men have also been boosted by the return of Naby Keita, who has been out since suffering a hamstring injury whilst away with Guinea in October.
Both are likely in contention to start on Sunday on the back of a disappointing midfield performance in midweek.