Liverpool midfielder Naby Keita’s recovery from a thigh problem is ahead of schedule but he is unlikely to be fit enough to feature in the Champions League final against Tottenham.
The Guinea international could, however, be back in time for the Africa Cup of Nations, which starts on June 21.
Keita tore an adductor muscle in the 3-0 semi-final first leg defeat in Barcelona and the initial prognosis was a two-month absence.
“Naby is, I would say, a bit ahead of schedule, but that doesn’t mean anything for the final,” manager Jurgen Klopp told liverpoolfc.com. “He is now doing straight runs and all of that stuff, he feels comfortable with 50 per cent intensity and these things – but there is still a way to go. I know about the issues with Guinea and stuff like that; we don’t want to keep a player out if he can play – maybe they think it is like this, but it is not like this. For me, it would be good if Naby would be 100 per cent fit and could play the Africa Cup of Nations, to be honest. But we don’t know, we will see, and we need to work together with their medical department because in the end, a player who is fit – from my point of view – who can play, should play for his country. If he is not 100 per cent fit, he cannot play. That’s how it is. It looks good, very positive and we will see if there is a chance.”