Jordan Henderson returns as Liverpool train to forget Champions League setback

Jurgen Klopp manager of Liverpool talking with Jordan Henderson captain of Liverpool during a training session at AXA Training Centre on November 26, 2020 in Kirkby, England.

The Champions League defeat to Atalanta was still fresh in their mind when Liverpool trained for a return to the Premier League.

Apart from the sting of defeat, Jurgen Klopp is also trying to manage the workload ahead of an early kick-off against Brighton on Saturday. But with eight senior players out injured, there is little wriggle room.

Manager Klopp admitted it was tough to ask his youngsters to fill the gaps left by absences to more senior players.

The Reds fielded three teenagers – Rhys Williams, Neco Williams and Curtis Jones – in the 2-0 Champions League defeat to Atalanta after making five changes and leaving out the likes of Andy Robertson, Fabinho, Diogo Jota and Roberto Firmino.

Klopp said the academy graduates should not be criticised for the loss that made Liverpool's progress from Group D more difficult.

"The kids did really well, all of them," said Klopp.

"It is a tough task for the kids; we ask them to show up in the Champions League and play their best football and people sit there [and say] 'Oh, he's good... oh, he's not that good...' and stuff like this.

"They all did well: Rhys did well, Neco did well and Curtis played again like a 26/27-year-old midfielder.

"They didn't get tired during the game, which is helpful. They did really well, the kids were really good.

"We didn't have rhythm. We made five changes and that obviously gives you a few problems with rhythm, but we usually get through a game."

He had some better news on the injury front with captain Jordan Henderson back in training, which is a boost as his midfield is currently awaiting the return to fitness of Thiago Alcantara, Xherdan Shaqiri and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.

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