The Scotland captain has missed the Reds’ previous three matches due to injury, which has allowed Konstantinos Tsimikas to play at left-back. The 28-year-old also missed all three of his country’s recent UEFA Nations League clashes. However, Klopp claims that his first-choice defender is close to full fitness.
The Liverpool boss also offered an update on four of his central midfielders who have all suffered from injury problems. He stated that Curtis Jones, who hasn’t played since the Community Shield, is the closest out of the injured players to returning to full fitness.
However, Klopp had less positive news about Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who remain out due to injury.
Klopp also revealed why Arthur was absent from the squad that won 2-0 against Rangers in the UEFA Champions League this week.
Ahead of his team’s crucial game against table toppers Arsenal at the Emirates, the German boss told a press conference (as per The Liverpool Echo):
“Curtis Jones trained yesterday and looked good, just first session. Naby and Ox still a bit away [from returning]. Arthur is injured in last session before Rangers. Normal situation, a muscle. Robertson is running, looks close. Curtis is closest [to returning].”
Jurgen Klopp calls for greater consistency from his Liverpool players ahead of Arsenal clash
The Reds have endured a difficult start to the campaign, winning just two of their first seven Premier League encounters and are ninth in the table.
Their next two league games are against the top two in Arsenal and Manchester City.
Their convincing 2-0 victory over Rangers this week was a good start for the Anfield club. However, Klopp believes his team are by no means out of their rough patch.
He stated in his press conference:
“I said before a game, if we spot a problem, we want a solution instantly clicking. We are still a work-in-progress to find a way back. So you cannot say we’re back, we need consistency. We need to defend the rubbish out of everyone. I am not interested in short-term.”
“We have to be good until we are outstanding. Arsenal away, Rangers away – a different game to Anfield – and Man City…I cannot say ‘yes, we are through [the bad patch].”