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Klopp makes plea to German government, provides update on key trio

Jurgen Klopp has urged the German government to allow Liverpool special dispensation to fly to Ge...

Klopp makes plea to German gov...

Klopp makes plea to German government, provides update on key trio

Jurgen Klopp has urged the German government to allow Liverpool special dispensation to fly to Germany for their Champions League tie with RB Leipzig.

The Reds are due to head to Germany for the first leg of their last-16 clash on February 16.

However, fears over the UK variant of COVID-19 mean that German borders are closed off to visitors from the United Kingdom.

"The Coronavirus Protection Order agreed by the federal government last Friday envisions only a few exceptions and no special arrangements for professional athletes," the German Interior Ministry said this week.

Potential venues like Budapest are already being discussed for the game, but Klopp believes his squad would be able to get in and out of his homeland with minimal fuss.

"With all the stuff we are doing here within the club, the record we have with cases, the discipline, I think it would be reasonable to make an exception," Klopp said on Friday.

"We know there is another strain here, but we are not infected, we are really in a bubble here, and we could play at Leipzig without spreading the virus. Let’s just say that once.

“I don’t know exactly who decided it in the German government, but they said so far not possible. So maybe it is good to see for German people who are not [up on] the subject - we have the same problems like you have.”

Sadly for Klopp and co, the German government have repeatedly said there will be no exceptions for elite athletes.

Trio return for City

In positive news for the champions, a trio of key players look set to return for Sunday's do-or-die Premier League game with Manchester City.

Back-to-back home defeats mean Liverpool go into the game at Anfield seven-points adrift of leaders City, having played a game more.

But Klopp's hopes of reeling City in have been boosted by returns to training for Alisson, Fabinho and Sadio Mane.

Alisson missed the midweek defeat to Brighton due to illness, with Klopp reporting, "Ali feels much better, good enough to have an individual session today."

Mane's missed their last two matches, and Fabinho their last three, but their manager said, "Sadio and Fab will be in parts of team training today. Then we will see."

The door hasn't been closed to deadline day signings Ozan Kabak and Ben Davies being thrown in at the deep end on Sunday.

Neither was involved against Brighton, and Klopp says both are still finding their feet.

"I don't know," was the manager's response when asked if Kabak would start on Sunday.

"With our situation, we will see who can play again, who cannot and who should not or who should play again – all these kind of things. Then we will see.

"In an ideal world, you have a few weeks and work together on defensive things, especially organisation and all these kind of things.

"Ben and Ozan had yesterday an analysis meeting – and they trained – where they got shown all the stuff we do usually, like a centre-half movie.

"So today, proper session. Tomorrow, proper session and we will see. I don't know yet."

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Alisson Ben Davies Champions League Fabinho Jurgen Klopp Liverpool Manchester City Ozan Kabak Premier League RB Leipzig Sadio Mane UEFA Champions League