Jurgen Klopp has revealed James Milner needed 15 stitches after a clash of heads during Liverpool’s 5-0 friendly win against Napoli.
The midfielder scored the opening goal in the Reds’ final pre-season game, but was taken off early in the second half after colliding with defender Mario Rui.
Klopp said Milner needed 15 stitches in his head following the incident, although did not confirm if it would stop him from being involved in their Premier League opener against West Ham next Sunday, live on Sky Sports.
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“I knew that he would get stitches because we saw it on the pitch. He’s in the dressing room so I have to see him first before I can say more,” he told the club’s official website. “That’s obviously the big shadow over that game.”
There was also a debut for goalkeeper Alisson at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin, with the Brazil No 1 keeping a clean sheet, and Klopp remained coy when pressed on any departures from the club before Thursday’s transfer deadline.
“He’s quite a good footballer – probably as good as the goalie he is,” he added. “It was an all-round good performance for the first game, especially because I think everyone can imagine what happens inside a human being in a situation like that, playing the first game after all the things that were written about it.
Liverpool vs West Ham
August 12, 2018, 12:30pm
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“Playing against Napoli, it was the strongest side we played so far, 100 per cent – they had nearly a full squad here and it can look completely different. He was very, very aware of all situations when he was needed behind a high last line.
“We involved him a lot in our build-up, but we need to get used to that a little bit more still – that’s clear [and] he needs to get used to it a little bit more, but there were a lot of good build-up situations, so that helps.
“But at the end he’s there to catch balls and he did that in all the decisive moments today, so I’m really pleased.
“We will see what happens [with outgoing players]. If any player from my team is available, then in every other situation in my life as a manager I would have bought all of them, to be honest. They are all fantastic boys, they are able to play fantastic football.
“In this moment, the squad would be too big, that’s true. But it’s not that that means for us that we give them for free or something like that, Liverpool is strong enough to keep all these players and then we deal with that.
“We are not there to make other teams stronger, that’s not our job.”