Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has confirmed that Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has returned to training in the lead up to the Champions League against Bayern Munich. The England international has been sidelined for more than nine months since his serious knee injury but he is making slow progress towards integrating into the Reds plans for the season.
In an interview covered by Liverpool’s official website, Klopp acknowledged that Oxlade-Chamberlain has gone through the warm-up for select players where they performed ball-work drills, rondos among others. However, the German tactician added that the club will take step by step in the process of integrating injured players into competitive action.
“The boys had to do a bit of core work, passing and the rondos and it’s nice [they could be involved]. These things Ox can do, and Rhian can do, and Ben can do and Nat Phillips could do most of them. That’s all good. This afternoon they will have to do their own stuff again and hopefully we can integrate them step by step.”
Earlier last summer, Klopp had confirmed that the £120,000-a-week ace [Spotrac] would remain sidelined for a lengthier period and may probable miss the majority of the ongoing campaign. The same has certainly been the case with the midfielder witnessing no gametime to date but he could potentially re-enter the playing field before the season comes to a close.
Nonetheless, the club would not want to take any risks with the fitness of the 25-year-old and the decision on his first-team comeback may depend on how quickly he can be integrated into complete training while taking precaution to avoid any setbacks.
Liverpool are currently in a warm weather training camp in Marbella in preparation for the Champions League round of 16 first leg clash against Bayern Munich next week. The Reds have won each of their European games at Anfield this term and they can take one step to the quarter-final phase with another strong showing against the German champions.