Liverpool boss Kenny Dalglish says first-team stalwarts Pepe Reina and Steven Gerrard will both be fit for the start of the new season despite missing the club’s pre-season excursion to the Far East.
A group of Reds players which includes the likes of Andy Carroll, Dirk Kuyt, Jamie Carragher and Joe Cole have travelled to China for the first leg of their tour.
However, Reina and Gerrard have stayed at home in the UK as they continue their rehabilitation.
Reina is recovering from a double-hernia operation and Gerrard is still returning to full fitness after suffering a groin injury while playing for the Reds in March.
At a press conference held soon after touching down in the Chinese city of Guangzhou, Dalglish played down fears that the players could miss the first game of the season against Sunderland.
“[Gerrard] just needs to get the final couple of niggles out of the way and then he will be fit for the start of the season against Sunderland,” the Scot confirmed.
“The same situation applies to Pepe – he had a double hernia operation in June. He isn’t fit and so had to stay at home. He should be ready for the start of the season.”
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Meanwhile, Dalglish also confirmed that he was looking to bring more players into the club following the captures of Jordan Henderson from Sunderland and Charlie Adam from Blackpool.
However, he refused to provide any names on the basis that this would be “disrespectful” to the people and clubs involved.
He added that, should any fresh blood be brought in, then it would follow that some players could be expected to make their Anfield exits.
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