Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has been handed a timely injury boost ahead of his side's clash with West Ham on Saturday as his right-back ranks have been bolstered by the long awaited return of Nathaniel Clyne.
The England international has returned to first team training at the Reds' Melwood base after being sidelined since the end of last season with a troublesome back injury, which required surgery in November to address the issue.
In Clyne's absence the club's youngsters Joe Gomez and Trent Alexander-Arnold have stepped up to the plate and delivered impressive performances in rotation, which is unlikely to result in the 26-year-old walking straight back into Liverpool's starting 11.
Clyne took part in Liverpool's warm weather training last week and returned to regular sessions at Melwood on Tuesday, but according to the Liverpool Echo the experienced right-back is unlikely to feature in the matchday squad for Liverpool's Premier League encounter at Anfield on Saturday.
You could argue that this is the first time Nathaniel Clyne’s spot has been under threat since joining Liverpool – he’s got it all to prove, or miss out – not a bad thing.— Ben Webb (@BenWebbLFC) February 20, 2018
Hopefully a resurgent man emerges.
Having failed to play since the Reds' 3-0 victory over Middlesbrough on the final day of last season, Clyne faces an uphill battle to regain match fitness in time to stake his claim for a spot in England's World Cup squad this summer.
In other news, Liverpool's counterparts West Ham are reportedly set to be boosted by the return of Manuel Lanzini on Saturday - who sustained a hamstring injury against Bournemouth last month.
The 25-year-old hinted his return on social media after captioning a picture with "waiting for Saturday" earlier in the week having already told the the club's website: “My injury is getting better every day and I’m expect to be back very soon. I’m training hard and I expect to go back with the team next week."