Another Liverpool blow as ace in race against time to make clash against Stoke
By Alex Stevens
Phiippe Coutinho is a major doubt for Liverpool’s Premier League clash against Stoke at the Britannia Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
The Brazilian playmaker was withdrawn due to illness 65 minutes into the Merseysiders’ 2-2 league draw against Bournemouth on Wednesday night.
Manager Jurgen Klopp revealed at his media briefing on Friday afternoon that Coutinho has still not recovered from the bug and is in a race against time to be fit for the trip to Stoke.
“Phil is still ill,” said Klopp, as quoted by the official Liverpool Twitter account. “It will be close [for tomorrow].”
Klopp: “Phil is still ill. It will be close [for tomorrow].” pic.twitter.com/nECs7asPdX
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) April 7, 2017
Coutinho’s potential absence is another blow for Liverpool as Klopp revealed that Sadio Mane will undergo knee surgery and miss the remainder of the season.
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Midfield pair Adam Lallana and Jordan Henderson are also still recovering from injuries and have been ruled out of the match against Mark Hughes’ 12th-placed side.
Coutinho followed up his man-of-the-match Merseyside derby display last weekend with another fine performance against Bournemouth, scoring the opener and creating havoc until illness forced his situation.
Liverpool could recall Daniel Sturridge, an unused substitute in midweek, if Coutinho misses out on Saturday.
In other Liverpool team news, the club are in talks over a mega-money deal that they hope to secure next month.