Martin Skrtel
Skrtel is set to return to the Liverpool defence.Reuters/Andrew Yates

Liverpool defender Martin Skrtel will be in contention to make his first appearance since August against West Ham United this weekend after fully recovering from knee ligament damage.

The Slovakian international hasn't featured since the 3-1 defeat to Manchester City after a recurrence of the problem, but having returned to first team training, is now available for selection.

Speaking ahead of Liverpool's Champions League opener against Ludogorets Razgrad, manager Brendan Rodgers said: "Martin has worked very hard. He joined the group yesterday, so he is working well.

"It's probably too early for this game but after a good week's training he should be ready for the West Ham.

"Apart from that, we're pretty much the same in terms of injuries."

Defeats to Manchester City and Aston Villa already this season have highlighted the problems which have beset a much-changed Liverpool backline, with seven players operating in the club's defence in their opening four games.

Dejan Lovren has however been ever-present since his summer move from Southampton and despite playing every minute of the current campaign has declared himself fit and ready for the club's return to Europe's premier club competition.

"We will play more games but that is good for me and that is good for the team," he said. "I am not worried."

"We are ready. We need to try and take the points. I am ready, I am fit. It is a tough job. I am 25. I need to improve as person and as a player in every game.

"I think I am ready to play in the Champions League. I can't wait to start. In front of the crowd it will be something different to the Premier League."

"It's the start of the season and we've had tough games. We need to improve in every game to be defensively better.

"I have the confidence in myself and I am ready for it."