After missing the whole of the season to date, Nathaniel Clyne is back in training with Liverpool.
The 28-year-old has been desperately unlucky with injuries so far at Anfield. During the 2017/18 season, he missed 44 games due to a back issue, and last summer he ruptured his cruciate ligament which has kept him out of the action for the entirety of this season.
Now, though, the former Southampton man is back in training, meaning that he could play his part before now and the end of the season.
The Reds have the Premier League almost sewn up. They now have a 25-point lead at the top of the table, and need just five wins from their remaining 12 matches to be crowned champions. It has been a fantastic season already for Jurgen Klopp and co.
However, this has the potential to be a monumental one, as they are still in the FA Cup and the Champions League. Although there is little competition for the Premier League title, they are still on course for an unbeaten campaign, which is a carrot in itself.
As such, there are still plenty of important games left this term, and having reliable back-up options is paramount to success. Neco Williams may be a promising youngster, but he is just 18 years of age. Clyne, meanwhile, has 14 caps for England and 185 Premier League appearances under his belt. He is a player with years of experience, and will be able to handle the pressure situations deep into the knockout stages of cup competitions.
The Reds, of course, were within a point of the title last term, winning 30 out of 38 matches. They were almost flawless, yet their failure to lift the trophy can be pinpointed to a spell in January and February, when they drew three in four matches.
During that time, they were without Trent Alexander-Arnold, their first choice right-back, meaning that James Milner and Jordan Henderson had to fill in. Both natural midfielders, they were unable to offer the same threat as the 21-year-old, who had 12 assists in the Premier League last term.
But Liverpool had no real alternative to Alexander-Arnold – mainly due to the fact that Clyne had been allowed to leave on loan to Bournemouth.
As such, a quality back-up could be the difference as the Merseyside club chase the treble. He should be welcomed back with open arms.