The Hard Tackle takes a look at the most important Liverpool news that have been making the rounds.

Liverpool were held to a 2-2 draw against West Ham last night but must move on quickly as they visit Middlesbrough on Wednesday. Ahead of the league game though, here’s a roundup of everything happening in and around Anfield.

Coutinho targets return against City

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 26: Philippe Coutinho of Liverpool lies injured during the Premier League match between Liverpool and Sunderland at Anfield on November 26, 2016 in Liverpool, England. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND – NOVEMBER 26: Philippe Coutinho of Liverpool lies injured during the Premier League match between Liverpool and Sunderland at Anfield on November 26, 2016 in Liverpool, England. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

The Reds’ talismanic attacking midfielder Philippe Coutinho has communicated his desire to return to action in time for Liverpool’s New Year’s Eve clash against Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City. The Brazil international suffered an ankle injury in the early stages of Liverpool’s 2-0 win over Sunderland last month.

Coutinho was expected to be on the sidelines for at least four weeks, but confessed in a chat with liverpoolfc.com his target of returning for the match against City. Claiming that he is progressing well in his recovery, he said: “This is still my hope – to return for this game. The rehab is going really well. I can now walk without crutches and I am working well with the medical team. So I’m pleased with how I am recovering.”

Coutinho has been instrumental in Liverpool’s fortunes this season, scoring six times and assisting a further six goals in 14 appearances before his unfortunate injury. With Liverpool’s form slipping slightly in recent weeks with the loss at Bournemouth before Sunday’s draw against West Ham, an early return from Coutinho will be much looked forward to.

Klopp’s January plans

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 11: Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp looks on during the Premier League match between Liverpool and West Ham United at Anfield on December 11, 2016 in Liverpool, England. (Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images)

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 11: Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp looks on during the Premier League match between Liverpool and West Ham United at Anfield on December 11, 2016 in Liverpool, England. (Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images)

Jurgen Klopp has divulged that Liverpool could enter the market when the winter transfer window opens in January, while acknowledging that it could be difficult to acquire their preferred targets. The club has been linked with a number of players in recent weeks, with reported interest in Javier Hernandez, Franck Kessie and Mahmoud Dahoud, among others.

With the likes of Philippe Coutinho (ankle), Daniel Sturridge (calf) and Danny Ings (knee) all nursing their respective injuries, Liverpool are running thin on backup options in midfield and attack, with youth players Ben Woodburn and Ovie Ejaria among the substitutes on the weekend. On top of that, Sadio Mane will be unavailable for a month in January national duty for Senegal beckons at the African Cup of Nations.

Klopp admitted on Monday in his pre-match press conference that Liverpool could be monitoring a few players with a view to making a signing in January if the injury troubles continue. He said: “If you watch our bench yesterday — very experienced in defence and not in the same way experienced in the offence.”

“If the situation stays like this then it’s clear that we have open eyes for everything. But the winter transfer market is maybe the most difficult one because the players you want, the other clubs doesn’t want to give you. It’s not about money. The players you don’t want, you can have. That’s all.”

Carragher’s blunt advice to Karius

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 22: Loris Karius, goalkeeper of Liverpool looks on during the Premier League match between Liverpool and West Bromwich Albion at Anfield on October 22, 2016 in Liverpool, England. (Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images)

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND – OCTOBER 22: Loris Karius, goalkeeper of Liverpool looks on during the Premier League match between Liverpool and West Bromwich Albion at Anfield on October 22, 2016 in Liverpool, England. (Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images)

Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher has some words of advice for under-fire Reds goalkeeper Loris Karius after another underwhelming performance by the German custodian against the Hammers on Sunday night.

Karius had engaged in a war of words with Carragher’s fellow Sky Sports pundit Gary Neville last week following the Manchester United legend’s scathing criticism of the Liverpool number 1 in the aftermath of the 4-3 loss against Bournemouth.

With Karius committing a couple of errors in the goals from Dimitri Payet and Michail Antonio, Carragher opined that it will stand the German in better stead if he concentrated more on his game rather than hitting back on the criticism directed at him.

In his post match analysis of Sunday night’s game on Sky Sports, Carragher said: “The keeper got criticism last week and has come out and had a pop at Gary Neville and mentioned me and my advice would be: ‘Shut up and just do your job.’ And doing your job and answering your critics would be saving that [Payet’s free kick]. That to me, you look at goals like that and think: ‘It should not go in, is the ‘keeper good enough?'”

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