Philippe Coutinho and Joel Matip of Liverpool will miss New Year’s eve Premier League encounter with Manchester City at Anfield. The Brazilian playmaker has not completely recovered from his ankle injury and his expected to return after The Reds’ encounter with Sunderland on Monday.
The 24-year-old Coutinho has so far missed six games for Liverpool. Coutinho picked up the ankle injury in The Reds’ win over Sunderland in November.
“The City game is too early and I’m pretty sure the Sunderland match on Monday is too early too.” Jurgen Klopp, Liverpool manager said, as reported by BBC.
The former Borussia Dortmund manager also revealed that he will not rush the 24-year-old back into the game too soon. Liverpool have done well to cope without Coutinho on the field. The 18-time Premier League champions managed three wins and a draw from their last five league matches, as reported by The Guardian.
Klopp also confirmed the absence of center-back Matip from the City clash. The Cameroonian international is currently continuing his rehabilitation from an ankle injury.
Liverpool host Manchester City on New Year ’s Eve at Anfield. The Reds are currently a point above The Citizens in the Premier League table.
Klopp’s history against Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola is good. Both know each other since their time in the Bundesliga as managers of Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich respectively.
However, the German gaffer was quick to note that recent history counts for nothing. Guardiola has had a huge influence on City since his arrival and Saturday’s encounter will be big.
“We love playing the best and they are in the groove of one of the best teams in the world. This is a very big game for both teams. Six clubs fight for four or one positions. Each game is kind of a final. If I wasn’t sitting on the bench, I would buy a ticket for the game 100%.” Klopp added.
Speaking on Guardiola’s recent trip to Anfield to watch Liverpool defeat Stoke City 4-1 in the Premier League, Klopp mentioned that he has never been to the Etihad Stadium to see City play. This is because he prefers to see matches from home “rather than standing up for selfies in the ground.”
Klopp rubbishes Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain reports to Anfield
Arsenal winger Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has been recently linked with a January transfer move to Liverpool. Speaking on the transfer news, Klopp tagged the rumor as “nonsense”.
“I don’t usually say anything about transfer rumors but I can make an exception. Nonsense. This kind of thing I think a lot about but I say nothing because it is really not interesting what I think about this.” Klopp stated.
Video courtesy: YouTube.com/This is Anfield
Photo courtesy: Kevin Walsh/Wikimedia