Liverpool defenders Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez made their long-awaited return from injury as substitutes in a 4-3 friendly loss to Hertha Berlin on Thursday.
Van Dijk has not been present since a clash with Jordan Pickford in the Merseyside derby in October forced him to have anterior cruciate ligament surgery on his right leg.
Center-back partner Gomez had experienced a similar period on the sidelines, having also suffered a knee injury.
Jurgen Klopp helped the two get back into action, taking them on the pitch for 20 minutes in the Reds’ last preseason game in Austria.
Liverpool may have been grateful for the defensive pair earlier, as they were two goals down thanks to goals from Santiago Ascacibar and Suat Serdar.
Sadio Mane and Takumi Minamino restored parity before Stevan Jovetic’s brace gave Hertha a two-goal lead once again.
Gomez was booked before Holland captain Van Dijk saw his header saved, but Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain finished for Liverpool’s third sequel.
– Liverpool (@LFC) July 29, 2021
Diogo Jota and Andrew Robertson also appeared for the first time in pre-season when they both went off the bench for the Reds.
Speaking to LFCTV ahead of Thursday’s clash, Klopp confirmed Liverpool will face Bologna in two-hour friendlies at a training camp in France.
“Now it’s the last game in Austria, then we go to France, we have two 60-minute games against Bologna there,” said Klopp.
“Then we go home – finally Anfield is calling! We are approaching. The season is not far away, so we should be better prepared ”.