Jurgen Klopp believes it is the “perfect moment” for Daniel Sturridge to return to the Liverpool squad.
Sturridge, 27, last appeared for Liverpool in February and has spent nearly two months on the sidelines with a viral infection and then a hip problem.
“I saw Daniel’s rehab training and he looked really fresh and sharp,” Klopp is quoted as saying by the Liverpool Echo. “On Monday he was team training. It was second day recovery for all the boys and he was part of that. He looked good. He’s very optimistic about the situation.
“I said before training to Daniel that it was the perfect moment for him to be coming back. It’s good news for us, it’s not just bad news with Sadio being out.”
It has been a frustrating season for Sturridge, who has made just five starts so far in the 2016-17 Premier League campaign.
For the majority of the season, Klopp has favoured a front three of Roberto Firmino, Philippe Coutinho and Mane, leaving Sturridge and fellow striker Divock Origi with bit-part roles to play.
“Managing players is always a challenge,” Klopp added. “My job is difficult. I can’t say all the time what players want to hear. But it’s not more of a challenge with Daniel than with other players.
“Unfortunately we couldn’t use him in this second part of the season as much as we needed. But now he’s back and everything is good for me. He will be very important.”