Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has confirmed Raheem Sterling is ready to return to action for Saturday's Premier League game against Aston Villa after the England international missed the last two games.

The boss has also claimed Daniel Sturridge will remain on the sidelines for Saturday's game while captain Steven Gerrard, Adam Lallana and right-back Glen Johnson are all doubts. Meanwhile Joe Allen and Jon Flanagan are still recovering from their injuries.

After their 1-0 victory at Sunderland last weekend the Merseysiders visit Villa Park in search for a victory to keep climbing the Premier League table and push for a top four spot.

Rodgers will be able to play his attacking catalyst, Sterling, after the 20-year-old missed the FA Cup third round tie at AFC Wimbledon and Premier League trip to Sunderland on an officially sanctioned personal winter break.

"Raheem is back in the squad, which is good news. He's refreshed and ready to work," the boss said.

However, Sturridge will still need some more time on the sidelines before making his expected to return to action as he has being out since the start of September.

"Daniel Sturridge is back and working well. He's obviously not ready to play as of yet, but he's working well, so hopefully in the near future he'll be ready.

"Time will tell. We just want him fit and there's no timeline on that as such. He's working hard, he's back in the final stages of his rehab here at the club, but there is no time on it yet."

Meanwhile the manager has claimed he needs to assess Johnson, Gerrard and Lallana before making a decision on whether they can play on Saturday.

"Glen Johnson has been back in training, so we'll see how he is in terms of availability. He's not been training for long, so we'll see how he is after the session tomorrow [Friday]," he said.

"We're monitoring the likes of Steven and Adam Lallana. Adam's been out for a little while, but he's on the field. We'll see by the end of play tomorrow [with Steven]. If not, then hopefully by the Chelsea game."

Speaking about Lallana, he added: "He was playing very, very well and has settled into the club very well.

"He's ahead of schedule in terms of his rehabilitation. We're hoping he can join the group tomorrow to train. If he's not available for the weekend, then certainly for Chelsea he will [be].

"He's a wonderful technician; he's linked up with players when he's played and he will only get better as his time progresses here at the club."

Speaking about Flanagan and Allen, Rodgers added: "Young Jon Flanagan is still a little bit of time off [from fitness] and Joe Allen should be back training with the group in the next couple of days.

"We're getting there in terms of injuries."