Monday, January 23, 2017

Klopp unsure if Henderson will start Europa League final

SoccerNews in English Premier League 15 May 2016

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Jurgen Klopp is yet to decide if returning Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson will start in the Europa League final against Sevilla on Wednesday.

Henderson returned as a substitute from a month-long lay-off with a knee injury as Liverpool rounded off their Premier League season with a 1-1 draw at West Brom.

It is a timely boost for Liverpool, and for national manager Roy Hodgson, ahead of the Europa League final and Monday’s announcement of England’s Euro 2016 squad.

But Reds manager Klopp, who also welcomed back Danny Ings after seven months out with an anterior cruciate ligament injury, will not rush a decision on Henderson’s involvement versus Sevilla.

“I don’t know [if Henderson will start] at this moment, hopefully nothing else happens with the other players and we have to make decisions,” he told Sky Sports. 

“It’s very good that he’s back for him and for us too. We’ll see what shall happen, it’s very good, no more problems anymore.

“It’s the same for Danny Ings after his long break, he has no chance to be in the team for Wednesday but I think he’s the happiest person in the stadium at this moment because after this long time to be playing again Premier League football it was nice to watch.”

Liverpool earned a point at West Brom with a fine individual goal from Jordon Ibe after Salomon Rondon had put the hosts in front, and Klopp was delighted that his side maintained ahead of the Europa League final.

“I’m sure they are excited but I’m satisfied with the way they pushed it away, this squad was only [concerned about] West Brom, that’s really good.”

The Reds finish the season eighth and Klopp, who replaced Brendan Rodgers in October, believes a hectic fixture list prevented them from improving their league position.

“It’s not my dream position to be honest but it is what it is,” he said. “We have 60 points, everybody knows about the games where we lost the points, it was not today, it was other games.

“We are not the biggest difference to European football, there have a few moments where we could have thought the gap is too big for us, but we were always in the race. There were a lot of games it was not easy for the boys.”

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