The Reds are currently ten points adrift of the Premier League leaders and will need to muster their first top-flight victory of 2017 if they’re to stay within reach at the top.
However, they may have to do it without Sadio Mane – a man they’ve sorely missed having only won once in all competitions since he left for Africa Cup of Nations in early January.
The Senegal international – who has contributed nine goals and four assists in the Premier League – has been a star member of Jurgen Klopp’s side this season and would likely be a huge influence against the west Londoners.
But Mane could well be forced to sit on the sidelines come Tuesday night after he was forced to miss training on Monday due to issues involving his return to Merseyside.
Liverpool had chartered a private jet to fetch the 24-year-old from Gabon after his nation bowed out of the competition to Cameroon at the quarter-final stage on Saturday – but it hasn’t gone to according to plan in the slightest.
Mane was prevented from boarding the aircraft and forced to wait, subsequently delaying his arrival back home and casting doubt over whether he could line up against Chelsea tomorrow evening.
When asked whether he would be available for the Premier League clash, Klopp said, as per the Guardian: “I don’t know exactly. The club did an outstanding job to bring him back as soon as possible and he is now on his way.
“We thought it would be possible yesterday: we had a plane there but he was not allowed to go in the plane so we had to wait.
“He will be here tonight but I spoke to him and it is all good so far. He will be in tomorrow morning and we have to make a decision. We have to look in his eyes and see whatever is possible.”
With or without Mane, Liverpool will need to shake off their recent poor form in order to close the gap between themselves and Chelsea to seven points.
The Reds have a feather in their cap after defeating the Blues at Stamford Bridge last September, although Klopp and his men will be well aware of how their opponents progressed over the past five months.