Nathaniel Clyne is set to be available for Liverpool's Premier League match against Manchester United this weekend, in a fitness boost for Jurgen Klopp.
The return of the fringe star - who made just five appearances in all competitions last season - would not normally be greeted with such fanfare at Anfield, but an injury crisis has ravaged Klopp's backline ahead of the derby showdown on Sunday.
Joel Matip and Joe Gomez are both definitely out for the visit of United, and likely for the rest of 2018, after sustaining injuries against Burnley and Napoli.
Alexander-Arnold, meanwhile, is to be assessed 'day by day' after he sustained a foot injury in the vital midweek win over Napoli, which secured Liverpool's passage to the Champions League knockout stages.
Speaking in his pre-match press conference, Klopp seemed to contradict earlier reports that Alexander-Arnold was definitely unavailable for Sunday's game, while discussing his depleted options.
He sais (via Liverpoolfc.com): "With Trent it’s not as serious as it is with the other two boys [Gomez and Matip], but of course it is absolutely not top-class news, that’s clear.
“Trent, we have to see. For him, it is day by day how we judge it. It’s not cool but as long as we still have enough players, it is our job to always find a solution for it – and we will have a solution for the weekend, but of course it is not perfect.”
Speaking about Clyne, who last featured for the Reds in the Carabao Cup exit to Chelsea back in September, Klopp said: “Clyney was unfortunately injured in the last two or three weeks. It was nothing serious but serious enough that he couldn’t be a part of training. Luckily, for four days he is in full training again – so that’s good.
“Is he ready for 90 minutes? I don’t know. Is he ready? Yes.”
“Clyney is a very experienced player. Is it perfect? No. Is he experienced enough to do it? Yes, 100 per cent. We have other options as well, so we will not push Clyney through now after not the longest spell of training."
With Virgil van Dijk likely to be partnered by Dejan Lovren at centre back on Sunday, the main question mark for Klopp is over who will start at right back. Liverpool also have James Milner and Fabinho as capable emergency options, while Klopp also brought up the possibility of giving debuts to youth stars such as 18-year-old Rafa Camacho. However, the German stressed that being too 'creative' was not a good sign for squad depth.
He added: “We still have young guns. We have Rafa Camacho, who played outstandingly well in pre-season. Even Curtis Jones played – I think they both played against United [in pre-season].
“We have other options as well and as long as we have options, everything is fine. If we don’t have the obvious option anymore, then we need to be creative. Hopefully we don’t have to be creative too often because it’s never a good sign for the depth of the squad."