Liverpool are facing a major dilemma ahead of their game against Southampton on Saturday (18 November) after the Senegal Football Association revealed that the hamstring injury that Sadio Mane sustained while on international duty in October could have recurred.
The Reds forward sustained the injury during the previous international break and was expected to be sidelined for up to four weeks. Mane, however, returned two weeks ahead of schedule and declared himself fit for Liverpool's clash against West Ham United just prior to the ongoing break.
Mane played 77 minutes against the Hammers, whom they beat 4-1 and he looked back to full fitness despite returning after a two-week layoff. The forward's return was a big boost for Senegal, as he was included in the squad for their World Cup qualifier against South Africa on Friday (10 November).
The 25-year-old played the full 90 minutes for his national team as they booked a place in next summer's football showiece event in Russia with a 2-0 win. It was expected that Mane will remain with the squad but be rested for their final game against the same opponents on Tuesday (14 November) as they had already qualified.
However, the Senegalese Football Association's update regarding Mane's fitness is likely to upset Jurgen Klopp, who was hoping to get his player back fully fit going into one of the busiest periods of the season. The Reds will be sweating over the his injury. He has returned to Melwood to be assessed by the club's medical staff and continue his recovery.
Liverpool face Southampton on Saturday, but the more testing challenge will come in the following week when they face a difficult trip to Sevilla in the Champions League and the visit of Chelsea to Anfield.
"Following the match South Africa against Senegal Friday, November 10, 2017 in Polokwane, the player Sadio Mane was slightly felt from his old injury," a statement issued by the Senegal Football Association said, according to the Daily Mail.
"After consultations between the medical staff of the national team of Senegal and Liverpool, it was decided by mutual agreement to make it available to his club to continue treatment until full recovery," the statement added.