Liverpool confirm Keita injury situation

Naby Keita has returned to Liverpool to have his fitness assessed but has not been ruled out of the rest of the Africa Cup of Nations.

Naby Keita has suffered a setback in his recovery from a thigh injury after pulling up in training ahead of the Super Cup clash with Chelsea.

The midfielder will be assessed by club staff and has not made Jurgen Klopp’s squad for the clash at Besiktas Park on Wednesday night.

Keita left Tuesday evening’s training session early after feeling the issue and walked straight down the tunnel to the dressing rooms with one of the club physiotherapists.

The injury is a big blow to the player, who impressed in Liverpool’s final pre-season friendly against Lyon and as a second-half substitute in the Community Shield against Manchester City.

The 24-year-old had missed much of the summer preparations as he recovered from a thigh problem first suffered in Barcelona last May.

Liverpool wanted him to rest up in the summer but he was called up by Guinea for Africa Cup of Nations duty in June anyway and sent for an assessment by their own specialist.

The Reds star aggravated the injury during the tournament and that set him back as he raced to be fit for the start of the Premier League campaign.

Although he was never really troubled by injuries during his time at Red Bull Leipzig, Keita has missed a number of key games for the Reds – including last season’s Champions League Final. 

He missed four games last autumn due to a back problem suffered at Napoli, sat out two more matches in March with a knock, and was absent from the final four fixtures of the season as Klopp’s men chased a Premier League and Champions League double.

The German coach will hope for good news when his side returns to England on Thursday, although Keita is certain to miss Saturday’s league game against Southampton at St Mary’s.

He looks likely to be missing for several weeks, adding to Klopp’s early-season injury headache in the wake of Alisson’s calf problem that occurred last Friday against Norwich.