Jurgen Klopp has provided an encouraging update on the progress of recovering stars Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez.
The pair made a cameo return to the pitch in the pre-season clash with Hertha Berlin, putting the defensive duo in contention for minutes in the Reds’ opening Premier League clash with Daniel Farke’s Norwich City.
“I want to make it really clear, we push nothing. We just don’t,” the German told liverpoolfc.com.
“We wait a little bit, the players come, we have now with Dr Andreas Schlumberger a real specialist who is in constant talks and always observing everything.
“We know exactly how they feel – how they really feel and not what they tell us because they obviously are desperate to play again.
“It looks good, this morning [it was a] normal training session.
“Sometimes in moments we swap Virgil and Joe a little bit so maybe the intensity doesn’t get too high, but in general it looks really good.
“How many minutes on Thursday, I don’t know but there will be some minutes for sure.”
The Dutch international was ruled out for much of the 2020/21 campaign following a reckless challenge in the Merseyside derby in October, with his centre-half partner sidelined following an injury picked up on international duty.
As much as it would be foolish to rush either defender’s return to the first-team lineup, it would be equally ill-advised to discount the importance of their availability in pre-season.
It was a remarkable effort on our part to make the top four spots in light of the injury crisis that destabilised the team structure last term.
Having Van Dijk and Gomez back will offer a huge boost to Liverpool, with Jurgen Klopp’s men no doubt looking to get back into the title race this coming season and make up for our prior lacklustre campaign.