Nathaniel Clyne added to Liverpool's squad for Champions League knock-out stages

Nathaniel Clyne has been added to Liverpool's squad for the UEFA Champions League knock-out stages as he nears his return from a lengthy back injury.

The England international has yet to feature for the Reds this season having been absent with an unspecified back problem which he sustained during pre-season, having played 45 minutes of a friendly with Tranmere Rovers in July.

But the 26-year-old appears to be steadily nearing a long-awaited comeback given his inclusion in the Reds' European selection. He had minor surgery to correct the issue after suffering a setback in November and was slated for a February return.

Yet Clyne - Liverpool's first-choice right-back last season - could be back in full team training within the next few weeks and his eventual return will hand the Merseyside club a huge boost.

Trent Alexander-Arnold and Joe Gomez have deputised in Clyne's absence, with the latter starting 18 of their 24 Premier League games and largely performing well - although his season has been punctuated by errors due to his inexperience.

Despite his time on the sidelines, Clyne remains the club's most reliable defensive full-back - although his attacking contributions came into question last term.

Elsewhere January signing Virgil van Dijk and Danny Ings, now second choice to Roberto Firmino up top after Daniel Sturridge's loan departure, have also been added to Jürgen Klopp's squad.

Competition rules state that clubs who progress to the last 16 can add three extra players to their squad, with Philippe Coutinho - sold to Barcelona for £142 million - and Sturridge, Marko Grujić and Jon Flanagan, all of whom have been loaned out, making way.

Liverpool resume Champions League action when they travel to FC Porto for the first leg of their last-16 clash on February 14, hosting the Portuguese outfit in the return tie on March 6.

Klopp's charges topped their group without defeat, even claiming two 7-0 victories, and will be hopeful of reaching the last eight for the first time since 2008-09.

Liverpool's 26-man squad in full

Goalkeepers: Loris Karius, Simon Mignolet, Danny Ward

Defenders: Nathaniel Clyne, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Joe Gomez, Virgil van Dijk, Joël Matip, Dejan Lovren, Ragnar Klavan, Alberto Moreno, Andrew Robertson, Conor Masterson

Midfielders: Jordan Henderson, Emre Can, Adam Lallana, Georginio Wijnaldum, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, James Milner

Forwards: Roberto Firmino, Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mané, Danny Ings, Dominic Solanke, Ben Woodburn, Rhian Brewster