Liverpool youngster Rhys Williams has returned to Merseyside from England Under-21 duty early after complaining of a hip issue.
Three Lions manager Aidy Boothroyd confirmed the problem on Tuesday, amid his side’s clash with Albania.
However, the manager insisted that the centre-back’s issue – and his return – was only a precaution at this stage.
“He had a very minor stiff hip,’ Boothroyd said (via Sky Sports News). “It was in his best interests to get him back to Liverpool.
“With all the players, if there’s any potential injuries or niggles then our medical staff is in contact with the club.
“Rhys wasn’t actually on the bench so I thought the best thing was to get him back to Liverpool.”
Should he be fit, Williams will likely feature on the bench for Sunday’s crunch Premier League clash with Leicester.
Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez are both out for the foreseeable future with knee injuries. What’s more, Fabinho – who had previously stepped in – has a hamstring injury.
Reds boss Jurgen Klopp would likely favour to pair the Brazilian alongside Joel Matip. However, while he is to return soon, his immediate fitness remains unclear.
As such, Nathaniel Phillips will likely start alongside Matip, meaning Williams would entertain a key presence on the bench.
Elsewhere in defence, right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold will definitely miss out at Anfield. The England international picked up a calf-problem in the most recent game against Manchester City.
Meanwhile, there are also doubts about left-back Andy Robertson’s fitness. The Scotland international also has a hamstring issue but could return in time to face the Foxes.
Captain Jordan Henderson could also be fit after he left England’s loss to Belgium early with a back issue.
Defender flattered by Liverpool links
Amid Liverpool’s defensive problems, several pundits have called on Klopp to enter the January transfer market for reinforcements.
Reportedly among the manager’s targets is Schalke’s Malick Thiaw.
Indeed, the youngster has now spoken out on such links ahead of a potential move away.
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