Published: Sat, April 08, 2017
Sport | By Desiree Waters

Philippe Coutinho struggling with illness as Liverpool's injury crisis deepens

Philippe Coutinho struggling with illness as Liverpool's injury crisis deepens

Liverpool winger Sadio Mane has been ruled out for the remainder of the 2016-17 season with the knee injury suffered against Everton on April 1.

Anfield manager Jurgen Klopp said on Friday morning that Mane's left knee needs surgery, confirming "it's clear, season over".

Liverpool, who drew 2-2 with Bournemouth earlier this week, take on Stoke tomorrow and must win to keep their top-four rivals at bay for now.

But though they face a battle to return to Europe's top-tier competition next year, Klopp is confident his side - unbeaten in five Premier League games - have still come a long way this season.

Liverpool have been successful in seven of the last 10 games between the two sides, but Stoke still hold three wins during that period.

There had been hopes he might avoid surgery, but Liverpool have decided the best course of action is to disregard the remaining few weeks of this campaign and get Mane fit for next season.

Liverpool's absences do, however, leave much to think about in terms of predicting a starting line-up.

Klopp, bemoaning his injury problems, said: "These are the highest-quality players and if you took out all the players which we miss now from other teams I'd be surprised if they could play their best football". No Mane, Henderson or Lallana and Coutinho is also a doubt due to illness so it could be a tough afternoon for them at Stoke. "He was not at Melwood yesterday and he will not be here today", added the Reds boss.

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"We have to sit down and see what went wrong and what was good and move forward, because there are still a lot of points to play for", Origi said.

"All the injuries don't make life easier".

Daniel Sturridge could be involved after being an unused substitute against Bournemouth.

Liverpool have won just half of their 16 Premier League games against sides now in the bottom 10 positions in the table (W8 D3 L5) this season.

The Brazil global will be given as long as possible to prove his fitness but has not trained for the last two days.

Liverpool defender Ragnar Klavan has insisted that Jurgen Klopp's tactics didn't cost the team against Bournemouth on Wednesday night.

"We have to use the rest of the season to get more points than 60".

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