Liverpool pair Adam Lallana and Nathaniel Clyne continue to make significant progress towards returning from injury but neither are in contention to face Newcastle United at St James' Park this weekend. Neither player has appeared this season due to thigh and back injuries but manager Jurgen Klopp is hopeful both could be involved in the coming weeks.
The England pair have both been in light training at the Reds' Melwood training ground though neither have been involved in the main group. While there is no timeline regarding Lallana's return, Clyne is not expected to feature during the first half of the campaign having been left out of the club's Champions League squad. Adam Bogdan is also out with a long-term knee problem.
Joe Gomez missed the Champions League draw with Spartak Moscow but is in contention to feature, though Klopp has confirmed a number of his squad after battling minor injuries. Dejan Lovren has recently returned from a back problem while Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has been described as suffering from a long-running calf problem.
"There are no concerns," Klopp said, according to the Liverpool Echo. "We have a few knocks, we will see. I'll know, finally, tomorrow probably," Klopp told reporters at Melwood. "Both [Clyne and Lallana] are doing really well, but they are not in team training.
"With Clyne it was not too sure, but he's made good steps. For Adam it is completely normal, how we thought it would be. [Lallana] has no problems any more, but we can't rush in this."
But ahead of the trip to Newcastle to face former manager Rafael Benitez, Liverpool's attention has been focused on the prospect of their festive Premier League fixture against Arsenal at The Emirates Stadium being moving forward 24 hours to Christmas Eve. Broadcasters Sky Sports want to show the first game on 24 December since 1995, when Leeds United took on Manchester United, but have come up against opposition from supporters.
Liverpool were victims of a scheduling storm last season after they were forced to play Manchester City on New Year's Eve before travelling to Sunderland on 2 January. And Klopp has a feeling of deja vue ahead of the prospect of playing another ill-timed fixture.
"Let me say this; if the supporters want to see a game on Christmas Eve, then the TV broadcaster will find a way," he said. "Now I know it is possible, and if something not too cool around fixtures can happen, then Liverpool is involved!
"I always said that the broadcaster has to consider that the wonderful thing they sell, depends on the players and the quality and freshness of them. If they have to play 24 Dec, then can we fight against it? Sky, if they really want to bring the players, the supporters, the people who work for television into work on this night.
"It's no problem for the people to be concentrated on something else other than football on this important night. Maybe we could play without media? Just one camera! I really cannot imagine that anyone wants to watch football on that night, but I'm not so important!"