Harvey Elliott set to return for Liverpool following horror injury suffered in Leeds United clash

Harvey Elliott will return to action for Liverpool on Sunday after suffering a serious injury following a challenge by Leeds United defender Pascal Struijk.

By Flora Snelson
Friday, 4th February 2022, 12:06 pm

Elliott has missed 18 Premier League games since the Reds' visit to Elland Road back in September, when the 18-year-old was stretchered off with a dislocated ankle in the second half.

In the 60th minute, the visitors were looking to extend their two-nil lead, owing to goals from Mo Salah and Fabinho, by attacking on the break before a sliding challenge by Struijk brought Elliott down.

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Referee Craig Pawson initially waved away the challenge, allowing play to continue, but stopped the game when the severity of the Elliott's injury became apparent.

While the midfielder received treatment, Pawson showed Struijk a straight red card following consultation with his assistants, with VAR ruling there was no need to interfere with the on-field decision.

After the game, which ended 3-0 after Sadio Mané fired home a third against ten-man Leeds in injury time, the Whites appealed Struijk's dismissal, which was set to rule him out of United's next three games at a time when Marcelo Bielsa's back four options were restricted by injuries.

The FA rejected Leeds' appeal, sparking outrage in Whites chairman Andrea Radrizzani and confusion for Elliott, who took to Instagram to share his view that it had been a "freak accident".The Reds midfielder has been taking steps to recover from the injury since he underwent surgery for an ankle fracture and dislocation in September and now he is ready to return to the pitch.

Harvey Elliott on the ball for Liverpool. Pic: Catherine Ivill.

Liverpool head coach Jürgen Klopp has now revealed that Elliott will be involved in the Reds' fourth round FA Cup tie with Cardiff City on Sunday, and praised the youngster's approach to recovery.

"Very much [impressed by Elliott's rehabilitation] - we have really to thank Andreas Schlumberger for that, he's head of rehab here and he was very in it, very patient," Klopp said.

"But Harvey was the perfect client, if you want, so he did pretty much everything we told him without a question, why whatever.

"He is in a good place, full team training now.

"We have to see what is right for him, is it right to start, is it right to come on, but he will be in the squad definitely for the Cardiff game."

The Reds boss said he has been impressed by how well Elliott has taken to training following a lengthy lay-off.

"It looks, most of the things look completely natural, absolutely," Klopp said.

"Really quick after a long, long period without proper team training.

"When you saw him the first time you thought immediately 'maybe we take him with us', but it makes obviously no sense.

"So he has to go now step by step to get back to his best but he is close, very close."

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