Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain cut a frustrated figure at the Yankee Stadium on Wednesday evening, where he played 60 minutes in a 2-2 draw against Sporting CP.
The player was seen to have a number of discussions with Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp about his positioning and performance, and was visibly disheartened on leaving the stadium.
However, Klopp provided the reasoning behind Chamberlain's struggles as reported by the Daily Mail, explaining that the 25-year-old has been suffering with a calf problem that has been causing the player a degree of discomfort and stalling his recovery.
"Two games in a row with 60 minutes. That is very important. He has been a bit unlucky with a calf problem. It is not a tear but something he has from time to time when the intensity gets too high for him."
Klopp felt that there was a visual drop off in Chamberlain's performance on Wednesday night, which was directly related to his calf problem.
"He had to get through the first 20 minutes when he was really involved and then he felt it. Then he was not part of the game anymore, which is not too cool for the others if there is someone on and off. Apart from that he has made all the sessions, which is unbelievably important. That is very positive."
Klopp was in something of a downcast mood himself as he discussed his side's performance; not troubling to hide his dislike for the lack of intensity in these friendly fixtures.
"Every year is the same in pre-season. You have these games which have no real value at the end. It is different to the Premier League. Some things I liked, some things I did not like."
Despite Chamberlain's struggles however, he still managed to showcase why Klopp has described him as potentially being 'like a new signing' this season, and was responsible for arguably the most impressive pass of the night, when he played a clever outside of the foot through ball to set up Gini Wijnaldum's goal.
After suffering such a severe ligament injury in the 2018 Champions League semi-final against Roma, the Ox's road to recovery was never going to be an easy one. The Kop faithful will be hoping this latest setback is only a minor one, and he will be able to rediscover his form from two seasons ago, and help Liverpool transfer their European Midas touch to the Premier League.