Premier League leaders Liverpool were handed a fitness boost with midfielder Thiago Alcantara’s return to training but manager Juergen Klopp has said the Spaniard will not be available for Wednesday’s trip to Newcastle United.
Thiago, who joined Liverpool from Bayern Munich during the close season, has not played since October when he picked up a knock from a challenge by Everton’s Richarlison during their Merseyside derby draw.
Klopp said Thiago was making encouraging progress but will not be rushed back into the team until he had completed a few more training sessions.
“On Friday, he trained the full session but it was a reduced session,” Klopp told reporters. “He has to be part of team training, it’s not about training one day with the team and then you can play football in the Premier League again.
“It looks quite promising in the moment but I cannot say more about it, to be honest. I don’t know.”
Liverpool, who sit three points above Leicester City, missed an opportunity to extend their lead on Sunday against a struggling West Bromwich Albion side that held the champions to a 1-1 draw at Anfield.
Liverpool dropped points at home for the first time this season as a result and Klopp warned his players to be cautious to avoid similar results.
“We are not happy about it, we are actually the opposite, but now it’s over,” he said.
“We cannot change that anymore, we just can make sure that in exactly the same situation it doesn’t happen exactly the same again.”