Monday 4 January 2016 15:17, UK
Jurgen Klopp has confirmed that Liverpool will again be without Daniel Sturridge for their Capital One Cup semi-final first leg against Stoke.
Liverpool have scored just 22 goals in 20 league matches and have only one fit striker - Christian Benteke - with Sturridge, Divock Origi and Danny Ings all injured.
Sturridge, who has not played since the 2-0 defeat at Newcastle United on December 6, has recovered from a hamstring injury but Klopp will not rush him back until he can train regularly.
"Maybe you have the feeling Daniel has been training with us for the last three weeks," he told his pre-match news conference. "And every day he's fitter and fitter and fitter but I say 'No - I wait'. It's not like this.
"Daniel has had some problems in these weeks - not serious but then he couldn't train or make the next session. When he's had a row of (training) sessions, I will pick him.
"I'll be the first one to pick him when he's ready. I won't hold him back. It would be easy for me to say, come on, let's try, we don't score enough goals, but we have to be patient.
"Daniel had last a complete pre-season in 2011. During that period we load bodies with strength. What we're doing now is trying to fill his body with energy."
Another absentee is captain Jordan Henderson who limped out of the Boxing Day win against Leicester.
"We have to wait," Klopp said. "What's happened with the tendon is good - but it is painful. There is blood around the heel - but we can't rush it."