Football

Published: Wednesday February 12, 2014 MYT 3:52:01 AM
Updated: Wednesday February 12, 2014 MYT 3:52:10 AM

Liverpool's title challenge to get injury boost

Liverpool's Glen Johnson (R) challenges Cardiff City's Craig Noone during their Premier League match at Anfield in Liverpool, northern England December 21, 2013. REUTERS/Phil Noble

Liverpool's Glen Johnson (R) challenges Cardiff City's Craig Noone during their Premier League match at Anfield in Liverpool, northern England December 21, 2013. REUTERS/Phil Noble

(Reuters) - Liverpool hope to have a fully fit squad by the end of the month with many of their injured players nearing a return to full fitness, the club's head of performance Glen Driscoll said on Tuesday.

Defenders Daniel Agger and Glen Johnson returned to training this week while Lucas Leiva, Mamadou Sakho and Jose Enrique are all making progress in their rehabilitation and should be back by the end of February.

The quintet's imminent return provides a welcome boost for Liverpool as they look to consolidate their position in the Premier League's top four and make a sustained challenge for the title.

Brendan Rodgers's side had been faring well without their injured players, picking up 14 points from a possible 18 so far in 2014, including a 5-1 thumping of then league leaders Arsenal on Saturday.

"Daniel Agger and Glen Johnson came through training very well yesterday and today, which is good news," Driscoll said on the club's website (www.liverpoolfc.com).

"It's just a matter of monitoring their conditioning in terms of their availability for games, and it leaves us with just three injuries.

"Without providing specific dates I would hope that by the end of the month we should start to get the likes of Jose (Enrique), Lucas and Sakho back.

"It's normal in a squad of 25 to carry three to four injuries at any one time. Obviously, we would rather we always give the manager a full complement of players to choose from but unfortunately this season we have sustained some complex long-term injuries and that's when injuries can build up as the remaining squad members have to play more often."

Liverpool travel to Craven Cottage to face bottom side Fulham on Wednesday.

(Reporting by Tom Hayward; editing by Toby Davis)

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