Jurgen Klopp confirmed that neither Adam Lallana nor Daniel Sturridge will be fit to face Leeds United in the EFL Cup quarter-final on Tuesday, while the Liverpool manager also commented on Divock Origi's return to goalscoring form.
The Reds host Championship side Leeds at Anfield as they look to edge one step closer to the League Cup final, but they will be without several key players, including Philippe Coutinho, who was stretchered off in the Premier League win over Sunderland on Saturday, per BBC Sport's Phil McNulty.
Klopp said Lallana and Sturridge will be absent as well, although they are recovering from their respective knocks, and he revealed Roberto Firmino could also be a doubt, per Liam Prenderville in the Mirror.
"You know about Philippe. We will know more this afternoon," the 49-year-old said. "Adam is close to being back in training but he won’t be ready. Daniel isn’t in training and we will have to wait on Firmino. We will have to see how he is after training today."
None of them may have been in line to start the clash with Leeds anyway as Klopp has preferred to field fringe and young players so far in the EFL Cup this season, making 11 changes for the last-16 win over Tottenham Hotspur.
It is likely that Origi will start, though, having replaced Coutinho against the Black Cats and scored the Reds' opener in their 2-0 win.
The 21-year-old Belgian striker admitted after the weekend's match that he has found it "very difficult" in 2016-17 to watch much of the action from the sidelines, as he has not started a single Premier League game, per James Pearce in the Liverpool Echo.
Klopp preached patience to his young forward and acknowledged that he has endured a tough time of late, per Liverpool:
Liverpool FC @LFC
Klopp on Origi: "There's no alternative to being patient. It was not the easiest time for him but it was not the worst." #LIVLEE https://t.co/Kz52G5O0Ew11/28/2016, 2:05:42 PM
With Coutinho now likely to be sidelined for some time, Origi could well be used more often as cover, and if he excels against Leeds on Tuesday, he will put himself in line for a first Premier League start of the season in the Reds' next clash with Bournemouth on Sunday.