Jurgen Klopp has admitted that Liverpool have missed Sadio Mane this month while he’s been on international duty, but also insisted that it is no excuse for poor results.
Mane’s last game for Liverpool before jetting off to the African Cup of Nations was a 2-2 draw away to Sunderland where he scored to put the Reds 2-1 up.
However, he then gave a penalty away with a handball, leading to a 2-2 draw. Liverpool have not won in the Premier League since his departure and have, in fact, just won one game in all competitions since.
They have lost to Swansea City and Southampton, drawn with Plymouth Argyle but then beat the League Two side in an FA Cup replay and while Klopp has admitted that the Reds miss Mane, he’s not using his absence as an excuse.
“We did really well in most of the things. As much as I like Sadio, it’s not allowed to think that our problems are because we missed Sadio,” Klopp said in his pre-match press conference.
“We made other mistakes than not scoring enough goals. We missed Sadio, Phil and Joel Matip for a long time. But we’ve scored enough goals to win games. I speak about the whole defensive work of the team, if it was that easy to buy one player then all the problems are solved. I would be silly not to do it!
“I knew about the problems we had after the Christmas period.”
Liverpool now have a couple of days to prepare for the second leg of their EFL Cup semi-final against Southampton, from which they trail the first leg 1-0.
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