Sunday 4 December 2016

Gerrard injury blow for Reds

JAMIE JACKSON

Published 31/07/2011 | 05:00

Liverpool's hopes of making a strong start in their effort to regain a Champions League place next season have been set back after Steven Gerrard was ruled out until September due to an infection related to his groin injury.

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Liverpool's captain has not played since the 3-1 win over Manchester United at Anfield on March 6, but he had been expected to recover in time for the club's first Premier League game. However, the club have revealed that Gerrard is now undergoing a course of antibiotic treatment in hospital, where he will remain "for several days".

Gerrard will miss at least three Premier League matches -- against Sunderland, Arsenal and Bolton Wanderers -- plus England's friendly against Holland on August 10. His participation in the Euro 2012 qualifiers against Bulgaria and Wales, on September 2 and 6 respectively, must also be in serious doubt. The news is a blow to Kenny Dalglish, who is about to embark on his first full season as manager since his return, and will put more focus on their summer signing from Blackpool, Charlie Adam.

However, the Scotland international has said he is ready for the challenge of making an early impact on Liverpool's crowded midfield. "Liverpool have many talented midfielders but I think the competition for places will be good for the club. I thrive on that type of challenge," he said.

Liverpool's disappointment over Gerrard will be partially offset by the news that Jose Reina is ready to return after hernia surgery. The Spain international goalkeeper has not featured during pre-season after an operation but expects to play against Valerenga tomorrow as Liverpool look for a confidence-boosting win following last week's 3-0 defeat by Galatasaray.

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