An update on the fitness of Mohamed Salah (£13.2m) somehow failed to materialise from the broadcast section of Jurgen Klopp’s press conference on Monday, to much gnashing of teeth from Fantasy managers.
But the embargoed section delivered the goods later in the evening.
The Reds’ head coach was facing the media ahead of Liverpool’s Gameweek 37 fixture at Southampton, eventually providing news on the Egyptian and Virgil van Dijk (£6.8m).
“No [they won’t play on Tuesday]. Virg definitely not but that was pretty much clear before the [Chelsea] game already that I thought, ‘OK, this is the game now.’ He played really a lot and then Saturday-Tuesday again. It was clear.
“They are both OK. The target would be for both that they could be involved again on the weekend. Properly involved, bench or whatever, few minutes or start, I don’t know, we will see that, because that would be perfect for the [UCL final]. But if not then we take each day afterwards. But we are very positive, or [have] no doubt about the final. I’m pretty realistic about the Wolves game, but tomorrow rather not.” – Jurgen Klopp on Mohamed Salah and Virgil van Dijk
The Liverpool boss also hinted at plenty of changes for Tuesday’s clash on the south coast, which follows hot on the heels of a physically and mentally gruelling 120 minutes at Wembley.
“We only played the 120 minutes two days ago, so when the boys arrive today, I have to make a lot of decisions. What I can promise, we will line up a team only for one reason – to try to win the game at Southampton. We have to see who is able to help. The 30 extra minutes [in the FA Cup final] made a big difference.
“This is a high-energetic, well-organised team we face. Imagine we go there with ten, eight players who played 120 minutes. It makes no sense. That’s why we have to make changes. I don’t know how many, we will see.” – Jurgen Klopp
Trent Alexander-Arnold (£8.4m), Ibrahima Konate (£5.1m), Thiago Alcantara (£5.3m), Jordan Henderson (£4.9m) and Sadio Mane (£11.8m) all lasted the full two hours against Chelsea at the weekend, with Luis Diaz (£8.1m) and a cramping Andrew Robertson (£7.3m) replaced in extra-time.
The only other medical update we got from Klopp concerned Fabinho (£5.4m), who is progressing “very well” but not enough to face Southampton.
The Saints’ manager, Ralph Hasenhuttl, gave us his own press conference hours before Klopp, revealing that Stuart Armstrong (£5.8m) and Fraser Forster (£4.4m) were fresh doubts.
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