The England international has missed three of the last four games with a thigh strain and is still short of fitness.
Call of duty: Tim Cahill is playing for Australia in the Asian Cup
Manager David Moyes otherwise has no injury concerns, although top goalscorer Tim Cahill is on international duty with Australia at the Asian Cup.
Moyes expects Steven Pienaar to be available despite giving him permission to speak to another club while striker Ayegbeni Yakubu has joined Leicester on loan.
Provisional squad: Howard, Neville, Hibbert, Heitinga, Distin, Baines, Coleman, Pienaar, Osman, Rodwell, Fellaini, Arteta, Bilyaletdinov, Saha, Beckford, Anichebe, Gueye, Baxter, Duffy, Silva, Mucha.
CLICK HERE FOR THE WEEKEND TEAM NEWS IN THE BARCLAYS PREMIER LEAGUE Explore more:People: David Moyes, Phil Jagielka, Tim Cahill Places: Liverpool, Australia, United Kingdom