Liverpool vice-captain James Milner could be set to miss the crucial Capital One Cup semi-final first leg against Stoke next week with an ongoing calf injury, according to the Liverpool Echo.
After sustaining the injury during a training session earlier this month, Milner could miss a set of winter fixtures at the start of the new year.
In his pre-Sunderland press conference on Monday, Jurgen Klopp said: "Milly (James Milner) will start pitch sessions - not with the team but outside - tomorrow. He needs for sure a week I’d say."
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The German has already shown with Daniel Sturridge that he is reluctant to rush players into first team training until they are fully fit and it appears he'll take the same caution with Milner.
With club-captain Jordan Henderson now recovered from a heel injury picked up in mid-September, though, Liverpool are covered sufficiently in central midfield. The England international will likely feature alongside Emre Can and Lucas in a midfield duo or trio in Milner's absence.
However, with Joe Allen struggling for form and Lucas arguably past his best, the return of Milner will be welcomed with open arms amidst the club's pursuit of a top four place.
Klopp also offered updates on Divock Origi and Jordan Ibe.
"I cannot say too much about Divock because at this moment I do not have the results of the scan, we have to wait a few more minutes for this information," he continued.
"Jordon Ibe is back in training since yesterday. He was sick and had a few problems for about a week, yesterday was completely normal training so we have to see how he reacts to this."
The Capital One Cup might prove to be Klopp's best chance of success on Merseyside this season given their lowly position of tenth in the Premier League.
Liverpool face Exeter in the FA Cup third round on January 8 and Augsburg on Febuary 18 in the Europa League, though both competitions are still at their early stages.