Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish has insisted there is nothing “sinister” in Steven Gerrard’s latest fitness problem and his captain is progressing well.
The 31-year-old missed last weekend’s win at West Brom and has been ruled out of Saturday’s visit of Swansea and England’s two forthcoming friendlies because of an ankle infection.
Pictures of Gerrard leaving hospital on Sunday on crutches with his right leg in a protective cast led to much speculation about the extent of the problem and what procedure he had actually undergone.
However, Dalglish dismissed the conspiracy theories.
“Since they have found the infection he has progressed extremely well and everything is positive for him,” said the Scot.
“We found the infection but I suppose it is a bit like flu – you know you’ve got it but you don’t know where it came from. But it is responding really well so that is positive for him. There’s nothing more sinister either.”
Liverpool beat West Brom without the services of Gerrard and Jamie Carragher (calf), their two most experienced players, and there remains a doubt over whether the latter will be ready to return at the weekend.
And while Dalglish admits the side miss their Scouse heartbeat he feels that, unlike at times in the past, a squad which has been significantly strengthened over the last 10 months is well-equipped to cope without them.
“We will have a rain check on Carra. If he’s not going to be right he’s not going to be right,” added the Reds boss.
“I think as a club we are much better with those two fit. They have been fantastic servants for the club and they will continue to be.
“It is a great achievement for the boys to get a result at West Brom without either of those two playing.”