Premier League

Coutinho nears Liverpool comeback

Philippe Coutinho (L) and Steven Gerrard during Thursday's training session.
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Liverpool playmaker Philippe Coutinho is closing in on a return to first-team action following his shoulder operation last month.

The Brazilian has been absent since the 2-2 draw at Swansea on September 16 but he could be back in the squad for the trip to Arsenal next weekend.

"Philippe might just be short for this weekend," said Reds manager Brendan Rodgers ahead of Saturday's visit of West Brom.

"I think, after the weekend, he'll be fine. He has got really good strength in his shoulder now, it's just getting him up to speed in training and joining the group.

"He has re-joined training with the group. He's been on the field doing a lot of physical work and he has joined in with the team on a non-contact basis.

"He has been in the last couple of days and has looked brilliant to be honest, like he has never been away with his flow and fluency with the ball.

"His work has been excellent. It's great to see him back in and it's another quality player back for us. You always miss quality."

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