Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson has calmed fears that Steven Gerrard has suffered a setback in his return from injury.
The Reds captain has been unavailable since sustaining a grade-two tear in his left hamstring during England's friendly defeat to France at Wembley in mid-November.
It has been reported that Gerrard suffered a serious setback in midweek training ahead of a planned return for Liverpool's trip to Newcastle next Saturday.
But Hodgson has announced that the 30-year-old only caused a minor aggravation to some scar tissue and the club's medical staff are not overly concerned.
"There's no problem with Steven," said the Liverpool manager, who will be without Gerrard and vice-captain Jamie Carragher against Aston Villa on Monday.
"It turned out that he just tweaked a bit of scar tissue. I spoke to him after Tuesday's training and he did say he felt he had tweaked something.
"But the medical people have had a look at him and said it was nothing, it was only scar tissue.
"It's fine and when he went back to training again he was fine. It's not a setback to his planned comeback and he should be fine."
Meanwhile, Joe Cole, who has already brushed off suggestions that he is suffering from a crisis of confidence, is aware that he needs to start meeting the expectations that accompanied his arrival as a free agent in the summer.
Having returned from a five-week hamstring injury to start against Steaua Bucharest on Thursday, the former Chelsea playmaker said: "It is down to me to perform on the pitch. I just need to get myself fit and playing regularly.
"There have been some good performances, there have been some poor ones. Consistency is the key and the only way I will do that is by getting on the pitch and staying on the pitch."
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