Brendan Rodgers today declared that Liverpool will travel to Newcastle on Saturday bolstered by their 'strongest squad' of the season so far.

The Reds boss expects his selection options to be boosted by the availability of fit-again trio Glen Johnson, Joe Allen and Aly Cissokho.

Rodgers told his pre-match press conference at Melwood: "We'll arrive with our strongest squad of the season against Newcastle.

"They haven't played games, but they've been training now for the last few weeks.

"Glen Johnson will be back. Joe Allen will be back. Cissokho will be back.

"As I said, this will be the strongest available squad we've had this season."

Rodgers' squad is further enhanced by the return of Lucas Leiva following a one-match suspension against Crystal Palace last time out.

The manager added: "Lucas will come back into the squad. He's another player who has shown his worth and he's got himself back into the Brazil squad.

"We've got a number of players here who are developing and improving in their careers, and he's one of them.

"The likes of Lucas will come back into the squad and, as I've said, it's the strongest squad I've had since the beginning of the season."

One man who won't be making the journey to the north east is Philippe Coutinho.

The Brazilian is still undergoing his recovery from shoulder surgery in September.

"He's working with the physiologists on the field," said Rodgers. "He's looking very good, but still not strong enough yet to join the training group."