Liverpool has been handed some disappointing injury news in the build up to Saturday's Merseyside derby, with both Daniel Agger and Glen Johnson ruled out of contention for a place in the match day 18.
The two injury-prone defenders have been active at Melwood this week, but the contest at Everton has arrived too early for their inclusion. Agger has returned to training after fracturing his ribs in the debacle at White Hart Lane and Johnson has begun light training after re-aggravating a hamstring injury in the loss at Stoke City.
While both players seem to spend as much time in the trainer's room as they do on the pitch, the Reds have remained reliant upon the fragile duo, particularly in the case of Agger. The Danish center back's polished technical ability complements his top-notch defensive attributes, making him Liverpool's best defender when fully fit. Of course, Agger is rarely at full strength and the experienced Martin Skrtel will be more than comfortable in partnering Jaime Carragher at the heart of the defense, as he did last Saturday against Wolves.
At right back, Johnson's frequent absences have allowed youngster Martin Kelly to shine in his stead. However, Kelly has struggled with his own hamstring issues, prematurely ending his involvement last season and hampering his start to current campaign, and Johnson's return will provide some welcomed depth on the right flank.
Although both Agger and Johnson will be disappointed to miss out against Everton, they will hopefully benefit from the early October international break, and return in time for Manchester United's trip to Anfield on Oct. 15.