On the eve of the FA Cup final, here’s your Liverpool FC morning digest for Friday, May 13.
Jurgen Klopp is confident Fabinho will be fit for the Champions League final – and believes Liverpool can cope with his absence in the meantime.
Fabinho prompted a major injury scare when he limped off half-an-hour into the Reds’ dramatic 2-1 Premier League win at Aston Villa on Tuesday night.
Scans have subsequently confirmed a hamstring strain that is almost certain to rule the Brazilian out for the remainder of Liverpool’s domestic campaign, with Saturday’s FA Cup final against Chelsea followed by league games at Southampton on Tuesday and at home to Wolverhampton Wanderers five days later.
Liverpool then travel to Paris for the Champions League final against Real Madrid on May 28. And when asked about Fabinho’s availability on Thursday, Klopp said: “There’s a good chance that he will be available for the Champions League final.”
There had been a hint the midfielder – who has featured in all 12 European games for Liverpool this season – was likely to be in contention for the game at the Stade de France when he was included on Wednesday in the Brazil squad for their international triple-header at the start of next month.
Jordan Henderson impressed when replacing Fabinho at Villa Park with the captain now expected to lead out Liverpool at Wembley this weekend.
Chelsea handed injury boost to key player ahead of FA Cup final against Liverpool
Chelsea have been handed an injury boost ahead of the FA Cup final against Liverpool.
The Reds take on Chelsea in the final of the prestigious cup competition at Wembley Stadium on Saturday afternoon. Liverpool saw off Manchester City in their semi-final, while Chelsea beat Crystal Palace.
As cited by our colleagues at football.london, N’Golo Kante has returned to training after a spell on the sidelines. The France international had missed Chelsea’s last three league fixtures with an unspecified injury, but appears to be back in contention to feature against Liverpool.
Chelsea are also sweating over the fitness of Mateo Kovacic for the final against Liverpool. The midfielder was forced off with an ankle injury during the win over Leeds United after a red card challenge from Dan James, and Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel said he did not expect Kovacic to recover in time to face Liverpool.
“I tell you, not as a coach, not as an expert, but I think it’s very unlikely we see him [in the cup final],” said Tuchel on Wednesday night. “Once Mateo goes out, he never goes out. He played in the semi-final of the FA Cup with the same injury and played another 15 minutes, which is almost impossible.”