Liverpool could be without both Joel Matip and Naby Keita for the huge game against Manchester United on Sunday.
With the Reds going top of the Premier League on Tuesday with their 1-0 win over Burnley, they know a victory over Liverpool on Sunday will put them six points clear of the champions at the season’s midway point.
Whilst Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has some injury worries of his own to deal with, he is not alone in that fact, with Jurgen Klopp sweating on the fitness of two key players after they both missed training on Wednesday.
Centre-back Matip has not featured since limping off against West Brom on December 27 due to an adductor problem, so far missing three matches due to the injury.
With long-term injuries to first-choice centre-back duo Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez, Liverpool had hoped that Matip would be able to prove his fitness in time for the match on Sunday.
Midfielder Fabinho is almost certain to continue playing in defence and Klopp will now be faced with the choice of whether to persist with playing Jordan Henderson at the back, as he did in the recent defeat to Southampton, or play one of the inexperienced pair of Rhys Williams and Nat Phillips.
Whilst Matip is not definitely out of the game, and was working alone on a tailored rehabilitation programme on Wednesday instead of sitting out training entirely, Klopp’s preference is for players to make it through two full training sessions before being considered fit for selection.
With just three sessions left before Sunday, it means time is running out for Matip.
Speaking to the Liverpool Echo six days ago, Klopp confirmed it would be touch and go as to whether Matip returns to fitness in time to face United.
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Manchester United secured a vital 1-0 victory over Burnley on Tuesday night to go top of the Premier League.
Paul Pogba scored the decisive goal in a hard-fought contest at Turf Moor, meaning United are now three points clear of Liverpool — who they face this weekend at Anfield.
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“Yes – we will try working on that obviously,” Klopp said.
“Until the United game we still have around nine days, so we try. He is in a good way but if it will be United or a few days later, I don’t know.”
Keita, meanwhile, has not featured since December 19 and remains a doubt after missing training.