The Liverpool defender Dejan Lovren has admitted to taking painkillers to get through games as he battles a series of injuries that prevent him from training.
Lovren, 28, says back and achilles injuries have left him in terrible pain and forced him to medicate in order to play. He missed the Premier League games against Manchester City and Burnley but took painkillers in order to get on the field in the win over Leicester last weekend and Liverpoolâs midweek Champions League draw at Spartak Moscow.
âI have problems with my whole body for the last two weeks, my back and now I have hurt my achilles tendon,â Lovren told Sportske Novosti. âI am taking pills so I can play, five before every game. âI play but I cannot train at all. Thatâs why I skipped matches against Manchester City and Burnley.â
Liverpoolâs defence has been very leaky, conceding 17 goals so far this season, with JÃ¼rgen Klopp unable to rely on a settled back line.
Klopp is more positive about his team at the other end of the pitch. Especially as he is able to add Sadio ManÃ©, back from a three-match suspension, into an attacking quartet of Roberto Firmino, Philippe Coutinho and Mohamed Salah against Newcastle on Sunday.
âAll four in the best moment is an unbelievable threat but you can do nothing without the other six on the pitch,â said Klopp. âThe big improvement of this team in the moment so far is that we really create a lot. We had a lot of talks in the last two years when we played against sides who are only defending and we donât create enough.
âThat has changed and weâve made a big step in this. So far it doesnât lead to the results that we want but in a few moments you cannot create bigger chances. We scored goals from much more difficult situations than the ones weâve missed so far.â