Robin Koch has posted on Instagram for the first time since he went under the knife to correct a long-standing knee injury that eventually proved too much to cope with against Chelsea. The German defender is expected to return in March, and Liverpool’s Xherdan Shaqiri was among those to reply to the Leeds United summer signing.

Koch, 24, joined Leeds in the summer and had impressed since his move from Freiburg. Everything had looked rosy until he went down in some considerable pain against Chelsea – which resulted in Leeds suffering a 3-1 defeat. It has now transpired that he suffered his injury in his debut against Liverpool, and had been playing with the problem since.

Comments in his home country (BILD) suggested that Koch was aiming to return to full fitness before the March international break. It means he will be sidelined for the best part of three months – a loss which has only been worsened by injuries to Diego Llorente and captain Liam Cooper, though it remains to be seen how much longer Cooper will be sidelined.

Spain international Llorente replaced Koch in the loss to Chelsea but suffered a muscle injury – while Cooper was injured against Manchester United. Koch posted a message on Instagram, even hinting that he could be back before March by stating he will work hard in the “next few weeks” to return as soon as possible – suggesting he might be back before March.

His post prompted reaction from heaps of Leeds fans as well as numerous teammates including Kalvin Phillips, Pascal Struijk and long-term absentee Adam Forshaw – who is still overcoming a long-term problem that has ruled him out for over a year. Liverpool midfielder Shaqiri also responded to £46,000-a-week (Spotrac) defender Koch’s post, wishing him “Get well soon brother”.

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