(Reuters) - Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson Becker will be out until after the next international break in mid-October but midfielder Naby Keita should return to training with the first team next week, manager Juergen Klopp said on Friday.
Brazilian Alisson injured his calf in Liverpool’s Premier League opener against Norwich City last month and the European champions have kept only one clean sheet in all competitions in his absence so far.
Keita, who suffered a groin injury last month, has missed Liverpool’s last three matches.
“Alisson looks good and he is improving, but we cannot put any pressure on it,” Klopp told reporters ahead of Saturday’s home game against Newcastle United. “It was a really serious injury in the calf.
“It is now much better and that’s good for us and good for him, but we don’t know exactly (how long it will take). The target was always after the next international break.
“Naby is close. He could be in training when we come back from (Liverpool’s Champions League group stage match against) Napoli next week.”
Newcastle are 14th in the table under new manager Steve Bruce but Klopp is not taking them lightly after they beat Tottenham Hotspur away last month.
“They are very difficult to play against,” the German said. “The style is similar to last season. They defend with a big heart. It won’t be easy.
“I’m really impressed by the things they have done so far. Newcastle had something like 20% possession against Tottenham but they deserved the three points. They will fight like crazy.”
Liverpool are seeking their fifth victory of the season and a club record-extending 14th straight top flight win. Klopp’s side are also unbeaten at Anfield in their last 40 league matches.
“It was clear we had to change things,” he said. “We had to make Anfield a fortress again. We created a proper basis together, it became more difficult for teams to get something.”
Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; editing by Emelia Sithole-Matarise