Jon Flanagan
Jon Flanagan made his first-team return in their FA Cup clash against Exeter City after 619 days on the sidelines through injuryGetty

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp is delighted to have Jon Flanagan back in the first-team setup after the defender made a return from a prolonged knee injury. The young defender, who has spent his entire career with the Merseyside club, is highly rated and the German manager is confident that he will return to full fitness sooner rather than later.

Flanagan was sidelined for almost two years, 619 days to be specific, before making a return in February this year, and has made six appearances thus far this campaign. The defender, who was out of contract at the end of the season, was handed a new deal earlier this month and Klopp admitted that he played a role in convincing the club to extend the defender's stay.

The manager's belief in the defender was confirmed when he was handed the captain's armband for Liverpool's latest 3-2 loss against Southampton ahead of the international break. The defender is still not fully fit and is currently with the team at their Tenerife training base. The former Borussia Dortmund manager has taken all players not involved with their national teams, along with the players recovering from injury, to the Spanish island for a warm weather training break.

Klopp observes Flanagan in a current 'good moment', is happy to see him progress on a daily basis and has revealed that he is now close to returning to full fitness – as he is involved in all the training sessions without any special treatment.

"Of course in the past it was a difficult situation for Flanno because of injury but now it is a good moment and life can go on and the sun shines again, things like this," Klopp told Liverpool's official site.

"It's a really good moment for him, very important, and now he can start getting fit because he, of course, cannot be at 100 per cent. It's completely normal."

"In this moment everything is OK, he makes all the sessions. No rest, no special rest for him - really good," he added.