Livepool given attacker boost ahead of Tottenham showdown
By North-west correspondent Alex Stevens
Roberto Firmino has given Liverpool an injury boost after the team’s double injury scare.
Belgian duo Christian Benteke and Divock Origi both withdrew from the national squad on Wednesday due to injury.
Benteke pulled up with a knee injury soon after Belgium manager Marc Wilmots had announced that Origi had suffered a thigh injury.
Both forwards are now serious doubts for Liverpool’s Premier League home clash against Tottenham next Thursday.
Speaking on Wednesday, Klopp revealed that Klopp “is close” to a return to fitness as the manager delivered an optimistic update on the Brazilian’s recovery from a hamstring injury.
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The Liverpool playmaker has uploaded a series of photographs on to his Snapchat account over the last 72 hours showing him receiving treatment on the problem that forced him out of the team’s 3-2 defeat at Southampton last Sunday.
Firmino pulled out of the Brazil squad for their forthcoming World Cup qualifiers after sustaining a hamstring injury following Liverpool’s 1-1 Europa League draw with Manchester United last Thursday.
He flew to Tenerife with Liverpool’s non-international and injured players for a warm weather training camp on Monday as Jurgen Klopp puts his depleted squad through their paces in a change of environment.
Klopp is hopeful that Firmino’s injury is only a minor one and that he will be available for the Premier League clash against Spurs and the Europa League quarter-final first leg against Borussia Dortmund five days later.
Speaking to the Liverpool Echo on Wednesday about the fitness of injured trio Firmino, Alberto Moreno (hamstring) and Lucas Leiva (thigh), Klopp was upbeat.
“Alberto is fine now. He trained this morning and he’s looking good,” Klopp said. “Roberto is close. Both he and Lucas are in a good way and improving. But I can’t say at this stage when they will be ready.”
Moreno has recovered from the hamstring problem which forced him to miss Liverpool’s past two matches.
The Spanish left-back was hurt during a training session at Old Trafford on the eve of last week’s Europa League clash with Manchester United and also missed the Southampton defeat.
But he was given the green light to resume full training during the club’s warm weather training camp in Tenerife on Wednesday.
The former Sevilla defender should return to action against Tottenham but Klopp must wait before getting the green light to select Firmino.
In other Liverpool injury news, Moreno has uploaded some photos on to his Snapchat account as he steps up his recovery.