Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp insists the recent muscle injury sustained by Sadio Mane is not that serious, but admits he is unsure if it will rule the player out of this weekend's Premier League trip to newly-promoted Burnley. The Senegalese forward has made an impressive start to life at Anfield since his £34m ($44.7m) summer switch from Southampton, terrorising Barcelona in pre-season and also notching a stunning solo goal on his competitive debut during last weekend's chaotic 4-3 opening win at Arsenal.
Concerns over Mane's fitness ahead of that clash at Turf Moor first arose yesterday, with reports from the Daily Mail claiming that he had been taken to hospital amid concerns over a possible dislocated shoulder sustained during a training ground collision at Melwood. The same publication reported those fears proved to be unfounded following scans, though the affected area was still put in a precautionary sling.
"It was a challenge between two players in the air and Sadio fell on his shoulder," Klopp was quoted as saying by the Liverpool Echo at his pre-match press conference on Thursday (18 August). "It's not that serious. It won't take a long time but I don't know yet whether he will be available for this weekend."
Two players that do look almost certain to feature at Burnley are vice-captain James Milner and striker Daniel Sturridge. The pair missed Sunday's seven-goal thriller in north London due to heel and hip problems respectively, although it has now been revealed that both are back in full first-team training.
Long-serving midfielder Lucas Leiva, whose agent claimed earlier this week was prevented by Klopp from joining Turkish outfit Galatasaray, could also return. The manager further confirmed that centre-back Mamadou Sakho, sent home from the pre-season tour of the US for his sloppy timekeeping, is "not far away" from making his comeback from an Achilles issue.
New goalkeeper Loris Karius remains sidelined as he continues to rehabilitate after surgery on a broken hand, while Joe Gomez is still dealing with his own Achilles setback that has hampered the final stages of his recovery from a long-term cruciate ligament injury. Winger Sheyi Ojo has been diagnosed with a back fracture and is expected to be out for around a month.