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Injuries and illness – What has been said about 9 Liverpool return timelines

The new season is only days away and Liverpool have nine fitness concerns throughout the squad, but what has been said about their return timelines?

Ten weeks after last season came to a close, the Reds are to be back in competitive action on Saturday as they meet Fulham in the opening game.

A welcome return is expected in goal but there will be a number of absentees at Craven Cottage after injuries sustained throughout pre-season.

But what is the current state of play on the injury and illness front?

 

Alisson

SALZBURG, AUSTRIA - Wednesday, July 27, 2022: Liverpool's injured goalkeeper Alisson Becker during the pre-match warm-up before a pre-season friendly between FC Red Bull Salzburg and Liverpool FC at the Red Bull Arena. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

The Brazilian featured just once in pre-season after picking up an abdominal injury while in Asia but has been steadily ramping up his training over the last week.

The hope was that he could return against Man City in the Community Shield but the timeline shifted to the opening day.

“He will definitely be available for Fulham,” Jurgen Klopp said last week. The words we all wanted to hear.

 

Diogo Jota

SINGAPORE - Wednesday, July 13, 2022: Liverpool's Diogo Jota arrives at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Singapore on Day Four of the club's pre-season Asia Tour. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Jota was another player who succumbed to injury while on the tour of Asia, with a reoccurrence of the hamstring issue from his time with Portugal in the summer.

Before the Community Shield clash, Klopp said his recovery would “take a while, unfortunately,” and a report on Tuesday revealed he is expected back “within two weeks.”

With pre-season fitness to catch up on, he is unlikely to feature until September.

 

Naby Keita

SINGAPORE - Friday, July 15, 2022: Liverpool's Naby Keita waves to supporters after the Standard Chartered Singapore Trophy pre-season friendly match between Liverpool FC and Crystal Palace FC at the Singapore National Stadium. Liverpool won 2-0. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

We saw Keita in Leicester for a handful of minutes but he then missed the Strasbourg friendly the following day, and it will be a waiting game for Fulham.

“Naby is ill,” Klopp confirmed the reason for his absence on Sunday.

Having only come on as a substitute in the Community Shield and now being ill, the midfield trio looks to be Fabinho, Jordan Henderson and Thiago on Saturday.

 

Curtis Jones

SALZBURG, AUSTRIA - Wednesday, July 27, 2022: Liverpool's Curtis Jones during a pre-season friendly between FC Red Bull Salzburg and Liverpool FC at the Red Bull Arena. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

The injury to Jones came as a surprise on Sunday and was more puzzling after he was seen walking freely into Anfield before then later spotted wearing a moon boot with crutches.

It hints at a few weeks on the sidelines, hopefully, scans provided a positive prognosis.

“Curtis, we have to see,” Klopp said on Sunday. “[There] was no impact or whatever, so that always makes it a bit, ‘My god, what could it be?’

“We had no time; he felt it today and he wanted to play desperately, but then the medical department said no and that we needed to make further tests. We will do that [Monday] and then we will know more.”

 

Ibrahima Konate

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, July 31, 2022: Liverpool's Ibrahima Konaté during a pre-season friendly match between Liverpool FC and RC Strasbourg Alsace at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

The centre-back was forced from the field in the second half against Strasbourg after feeling the effects on his knee from an earlier contest.

Klopp sounded as positive as he could after the first look.

“We don’t know exactly yet on Ibou, but it doesn’t look too concerning, so I hope we caught it in the right moment.”

Virgil van Dijk and Joel Matip are all but locked in as the starting pair at the back at Fulham.

 

Kostas Tsimikas

SAALFELDEN, AUSTRIA - Tuesday, July 26, 2022: Liverpool's Kostas Tsimikas arrives on a bicycle before a training session at during the club's pre-season training camp in Austria. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Tsimikas featured three times in pre-season before picking up a knock in Austria, forcing him to sit out of the final three friendlies.

“He got yesterday a knock, so he cannot play [vs. Salzburg],” Klopp said at the time, with the injury described as a sore knee.

It’s not one Liverpool will want to rush but the hope will be his recovery does not need to last too much longer.

 

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain

SINGAPORE - Friday, July 15, 2022: Liverpool's Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain goes down with an injury during the Standard Chartered Trophy pre-season friendly match between Liverpool FC and Crystal Palace FC at the Singapore National Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

As if he had not had enough bad luck as it is, a “serious” hamstring injury struck in Asia to leave Oxlade-Chamberlain unlikely to play again before October.

“It’s a serious hamstring injury and it will take longer,” Klopp said.

“It’s a hamstring, we all hate this word, we hate the injury, but it happens from time to time and now Ox was the one.”

 

Caoimhin Kelleher

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Monday, August 9, 2021: Liverpool's goalkeeper Caoimhin Kelleher during the pre-match warm-up before a pre-season friendly match between Liverpool FC and Club Atlético Osasuna at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

It is a groin injury that has kept Kelleher out of Liverpool’s entire pre-season programme.

There has been a sense of frustration at the medical staff within the Republic of Ireland setup after the issue was not flagged appropriately in the summer.

“Caoimh felt something after the international game and everybody told him, the medical department there, it’s fine, it would be good,” Klopp explained.

“After holiday he came back, first training, felt it again. We checked it and it was not good.

“I think Caoimh will be another two, three weeks and then should be fine.”

That timeline makes for a mid-August return.

 

Calvin Ramsay

SALZBURG, AUSTRIA - Wednesday, July 27, 2022: Liverpool's Calvin Ramsay on the bench during the pre-match warm-up before a pre-season friendly between FC Red Bull Salzburg and Liverpool FC at the Red Bull Arena. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

It has not been the ideal start for the young Scot after arriving in the summer, missing out on the trip to Asia after an injury was detected during his first day at the club.

He did travel to Austria to be with the team but his injury is one that Liverpool are eager to be patient with and the time until his return to action remains unknown.

“We found a little injury which kids – which he is still – have when they grow,” Klopp said.

“So we have to be careful with that, that’s why he didn’t train yet.”

It is a similar situation to Kaide Gordon, who has struggled with injuries since making his breakthrough with the first team last season.

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