Liverpool defender Mamadou Sakho closing on return from injury

Liverpool defender Mamadou Sakho says he is not far off a return to the first team after resuming training on Friday.

Sakho, 25, has been out of action since last month after damaging knee ligaments during Liverpool's 2-1 home defeat against Crystal Palace.

The France international's return would provide a timely boost for the Reds as another centre-back, Dejan Lovren, suffered an injury in the 2-2 draw against West Bromwich Albion on Sunday.

Speaking to French radio station RMC, Sakho said he was "very happy" with how his first training sessions had gone. "It went very well," he said.

"In light of the pictures, everyone thought I had done my cruciate ligament. Luckily I was spared that.

"In the end, I only had to spend five weeks out. I'm getting better and better."

Now in his third year at Anfield, Sakho previously said he felt like "a caged lion" when he was out of favour under Brendan Rodgers earlier this season.

But the Paris Saint-Germain academy graduate appears to be enjoying life under new Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp.

"You sense his charisma straightaway," Sakho said of Klopp. "He has a game plan and the players respect it. In his head, everything is clear.

"He's a very humane person. He discusses things and is respectful with everyone, from the secretary to the players including the youth team. "He manages to get the maximum out of all of us.

"For the moment, it's going quite well. I hope it will continue."