Liverpool defender Nathaniel Clyne has suffered another injury setback and is expected to continue on the sidelines for up to three more months after undergoing a back surgery.
The England international's last appearance for the Reds came during a pre-season friendly fixture in July. He missed most of the pre-season with a back problem and Jurgen Klopp earlier confirmed in September the right-back will be out of action for a "significant period of time".
Clyne's injury forced the German manager to omit him from the Merseyside club's Champions League squad group stages. Liverpool and the 26-year-old suffered another blow after the player went under the knife on Monday.
According to the Liverpool Echo, the full-back underwent a corrective operation in London. Clyne has long been struggling with the back problem, which has seen him miss all competitive fixtures this season.
The former Southampton man returned to light training in October as part of his recovery. However, Klopp confirmed the defender suffered another setback prior to the clash against West Ham United.
Liverpool's head of medicine Andy Massey travelled with Clyne to London after deciding the surgery was the best option. He is forced to spend up to three more months on the sidelines, meaning he is expected to miss the busy festive period in December.
In Clyne's absence, Klopp has fielded Joe Gomez and Trent Alexander-Arnold in the right-back position this season. The former has impressed for the Anfield outfit and his display saw him being called up to England's senior side for the first time.
Meanwhile, star forward Sadio Mane is doubtful for Liverpool's clash against the Saints after the international break. He played the full 90 minutes for Senegal in their 2-0 victory over South Africa.
Mane, whose old hamstring injury has recurred, will arrive in Liverpool on Tuesday and Klopp confirmed the forward will be assessed.