Liverpool defender Joe Gomez is set to return to training next week in what is a major boost for manager Jurgen Klopp.
The Reds boss has seen his defensive options limited in recent weeks, with Gomez joining fellow centre-backs Dejan Lovren and Joel Matip on the treatment table.
Whilst Matip has now returned, Liverpool were handed a further blow after Trent Alexander-Arnold was confirmed to be ruled out for up to a month with a knee injury, further limiting Klopp's defensive choices.
Recent reports suggested that Gomez would be out of action until at least the start of February, however the centre-back is now set to make a return to training next week.
Klopp not panicking over Trent AA injury - likely to miss only 3 games. Manager let Clyne go because he wants @JamesMilner influence in his dressing room and in team if possible...and back up full back (on both sides) offers opportunity. Gomez back next week too #LFC
Whilst this weekend's clash against Crystal Palace will come too early for the youngster, he should benefit from Liverpool's training camp in Dubai after the fixture.
The hope will be that Gomez can make a return to the side against Leicester City on the 30th. Klopp should inform reporters of a possible date in his pre-match press conference later this week.
Gomez had formed a solid partnership with Virgil van Dijk in the first half of the season and the hope will be he can continue where he left off.
The 21-year-old's development was rewarded with a new long-term contract last month, seeing him remain at Anfield until at least 2024.
Gomez's return will be a big boost for Klopp, who has been forced to field Brazilian midfielder Fabinho at the heart of defence in the Reds' last two fixtures.
With Lovren and Alexander-Arnold on the sidelines, the boss may turn to Gomez to fill in at right-back, as he has done at times this season.
Klopp could also shift Fabinho to right-back, whilst James Milner is another option should he be needed.