Liverpool’s Joel Matip has returned to training ahead of his side’s clash with Manchester United on Sunday.

The 29-year-old defender hasn’t featured since suffering a groin injury in the 1-1 draw with West Bromwich Albion on December 27.

Manager Jurgen Klopp was forced to use a centre-half partnership of Jordan Henderson and Fabinho in the 1-0 defeat to Southampton last week, while youngster Rhys Williams featured at the heart of the Reds’ defence for the 4-1 win against Aston Villa in the FA Cup.

Liverpool are eager to have Joel available for United’s visit to Anfield this week. And the PL champions were handed a huge boost on Friday evening as Matip was involved in the training session.

The English giants are already without Joe Gomez and Virgil van Dijk, who are both sidelined with long-term injuries.

Speaking on Friday, Jurgen admitted he was hesitant to start Joel against United because of his lack of training time before the match.

‘Joel is close,’ said Jurgen. ‘Does it now make sense to throw him into a game with one or two sessions, which he didn’t do yet, but today and tomorrow he might be involved?

‘To bring him [in], I don’t know. We have to see, we have to decide, we have to look at him and how he will train, how he looks in training and these kind of things, but we have still different solutions.

‘Hendo is very important in midfield for us as well, so we just have to see. It’s not decided yet, why should I?’