Philippe Coutinho is likely to come back into the fold for Liverpool’s Champions League group stage opener at home to Sevilla on Wednesday.
The Reds welcome the Spanish outfit to Anfield for their first outing in Europe’s top-tier tournament since 2014, looking to exact revenge for their Europa League final loss.
After a chastening 5-0 defeat to Man City in the Premier League, Jurgen Klopp‘s side will be looking for an improvement at home.
And the German is expecting to call upon his No. 10 for the clash, with Coutinho having been absent for the first six games of the season.
The 25-year-old was left out before the international break due to his attempts to force through a move to Barcelona, while he lacked fitness for Saturday’s visit to the Etihad Stadium.
But speaking after the loss in Manchester, Klopp confirmed that Coutinho could make his return against Sevilla.
“Tuesday,” said the Reds boss, before being corrected. “We play Wednesday? One day more. Good!
“Yes (Coutinho will be available).”
This is likely to come as a substitute, as so far this season he has played just 47 minutes, over two games with Brazil earlier in September.
Coutinho is yet to taste victory against Sevilla, starting in the 3-1 defeat in Basel in 2016, as well as playing in Espanyol’s 1-1 draw in 2012, while on loan with the Barcelona outfit.
With Sadio Mane sent off on Saturday for a high boot on City goalkeeper Ederson, Coutinho’s return could prove well timed.
Though Mane will not be suspended against Sevilla, he will miss Liverpool’s home clash with Burnley, as well as both trips to take on Leicester City this month.
Coutinho is expected to take up a deeper role in Klopp’s midfield moving forward, but his experience on the left flank could serve as an ideal solution in Mane’s absence.
Another option will be Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who made his debut for the Reds at the Etihad, and could be in line for his first start on Wednesday night.