Jurgen Klopp hits back at criticism of Trent Alexander-Arnold injury management

Jurgen Klopp hits back at criticism of Trent Alexander-Arnold injury management

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has denied claims he rushed right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold back from injury too soon.

Alexander-Arnold missed three games in January with a knee injury and, after three games back, was once again forced off at half-time of the 3-1 victory over Burnley, having suffered a setback which will keep him out of the upcoming Carabao Cup final against Chelsea.

The frustrating news left many Liverpool fans questioning whether Klopp had rushed Alexander-Arnold back too quickly, with some lashing out at the team’s medical department after it emerged midfielder Dominik Szoboszlai had also suffered a setback to his own recovery.

“We have to clarify a little bit,” Klopp told a press conference on Friday when asked about Alexander-Arnold’s condition. “I was not really aware of it but I got the news that there was a discussion about we might have forced Trent back because of two setbacks. That’s really unfortunate and nobody wants that, but different cases and different scenarios.

“As long as I’ve been here, we’ve never forced anybody back and we never will do, but we do work in a high performance area. If you [an average fan] have the same injury, you are fit after three days, but the guys are after four weeks because they have to sprint, stuff like this.

“We always try to catch [potential setbacks] at the earliest moment. Unfortunately, when we catch that moment, nobody speaks about it, like with [Alexis Mac Allister], now recently with Diogo [Jota]. That’s the job we have to do.

“The last decision is always by the player. If you only listened to the players, the players would play after two weeks, and then it’s a real problem. When the boys played, they were fit, but the situation told us then differently because it happened again. You never know if it would have happened anyway or if it happened because there was something before.

“It says nothing about the quality of anybody. It has nothing to do with [the medical department]. We have to bring the boys back as soon as possible, but never sooner than they are ready.”

Szoboszlai is also out injured / Visionhaus/GettyImages

Asked about the severity of the injuries to both Alexander-Arnold and Szoboszlai, Klopp admitted he does not expect to be without either player for too long.

“It’s a super intense period. People think about the final but before that we have Brentford and Luton, I’m not thinking a second about the final,” he began.

“With Dom, it will be around that time [the final], we will see. With Trent, maybe a week or two longer. It’s not great. I’m not sure Dom has a chance for the final, but maybe. Trent, probably after.”

There was some positive news, however, with the return of Mohamed Salah to full training after shaking off the hamstring injury he suffered at the Africa Cup of Nations.

“Mo is back in full training. That brings him automatically into contention,” Klopp continued. “Ibou [Ibrahima Konate] is not suspended anymore, Joey [Gomez] is fit again, Conor [Bradley] is back, Ali [Mac Allister] is back, so that’s all positive.”


Read More

Zaļā Josta - Reklāma