Adam Lallana
Lallana could return against Watford at the start of next month Getty

Adam Lallana is poised to bolster Liverpool's hopes of finishing in the top four of the Premier League after returning to outdoor training at Melwood.

Lallana, 28, has missed the club's last four games after suffering a thigh injury suffered during a routine 2018 World Cup qualifying victory over Lithuania in March.

He is closing in a return to action, however, posting a picture on his Instagram account of himself lacing up at the club's training facilities along with the message: "Time to step up."

Lallana has not featured since the 1-1 draw with Manchester City in March, missing games against Everton, Bournemouth, Stoke City and West Brom.

Jurgen Klopp's side have however managed to fight their way back into the top four in his absence. They currently sit third, two points clear of fourth place Manchester City having played a game more and six points clear of fifth place Manchester United – who have two games in hand.

The visit of Crystal Palace on Sunday (23 April) will come too soon for Lallana, but Klopp hopes to have the former Southampton midfielder back for next month's trip to Watford.

"With Adam, it is a little bit easier to say. I am pretty sure after the Crystal Palace game, he will probably be in normal training and that means then [for Watford] he is in the squad or we can think about him then," the Liverpool boss told a press conference last week.

"For the Watford game again, with Jordan it could be next week in training, could be the week after, but I think we are in a good way with him also. Everything will be good and I am pretty sure he will have a few games in this season."

Lallana has made 31 appearances across all competitions for Liverpool so far this term, scoring seven goals and providing as many assists. In February, the former Southampton captain was rewarded for his fine form with a new long-term contract believed to be worth approximately £150,000-per-week.