Mar. Abr 23rd, 2024


Liverpool assistant manager Pep Lijnders has said he is hopeful Mohamed Salah will be fit for Sunday’s Carabao Cup final against Chelsea, but said his participation remains in doubt.

Both Salah and Darwin Núñez missed Wednesday’s match against Luton Town after featuring for Liverpool at Brentford last weekend.

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«Dominik [Szoboszlai], Darwin and [Salah], we really have to see. We have two more days,» Lijnders told a news conference on Friday. «Then we will check if they can be there. It would be great to be honest.»

Ljinders confirmed the absences of Curtis Jones, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Alisson and Diogo Jota for Sunday’s final but threw his backing behind the club’s academy players to step up in their place.

«It’s also good in life to accept what you have, so that is what we’re trying to do. It brought us success in the past and we try to keep it,» Ljinders said.

«We have a few injuries so we get young players, players who didn’t play five in a row but they can show up and that is really cool. This season is a season we already created new teams, it’s a compliment to our squad and our academy.»

Academy graduates Caoimhin Kelleher, Jarell Quansah and Conor Bradley, who all started in Liverpool’s win over Luton Town on Wednesday, have played key-roles for Liverpool this season. The win over Luton also saw academy-players Bobby Clark, Jayden Danns and James McConnell come off the bench.

Goalkeeper Kelleher has emerged as an able deputy to Alisson and on Sunday is set to feature in his second Carabao Cup final for the club.

«I’m really pleased for him. At Liverpool you need two good goalkeepers and we have that. It is special and a huge compliment to the goalkeeping department,» Ljinders said.

«He is a complete goalkeeper. He can make match-winning saves and he sees the game, knows when to play with direction and he is calm, that serenity creates calmness for the others. Especially the way we want to play. It’s important to have a goalkeeper like that.»

Information from Reuters contributed to this report


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