‘It’s a perfectly normal phase that Mo is going through’ – Jurgen Klopp backs Salah to end goal drought

Liverpool striker Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah’s goalscoring form are currently at polar opposite ends of the goalscoring spectrum, but manager Jurgen Klopp is happy with both.

Anes’ two goals in the FA Cup semi-final win over Manchester City at Wembley earned him four goals in as many games, while his team-mate has now gone six games without a goal and his last from open play was in mid-February.

Whilst Salah’s position on the right side of attack is guaranteed in every game, Mane has seen winger Luis Diaz arrive in January when he won the Africa Cup of Nations away and have an immediate impact on the left flank which has traditionally been the undisputed domain was the Senegalese national team.


Luis Diaz wasted no time in impressing at Liverpool (John Walton/PA)

However, Klopp believes Mane’s current resurgence has less to do with the £37.5million Colombian and more to do with Mane’s recruitment and recovery from a grueling six weeks with his national side.

“I’ve known Sadio for almost six years, as far as I know he never needed any competition to try to be the best version of himself,” he said before visiting arch-rivals Manchester United.

“For a long time he played pretty much all the games when he was fit and consistently played at an incredibly high level.

“Getting Luis, I’m not sure if it affected that part of his game, I don’t know. That wasn’t the reason for bringing Luis.

“No, I don’t think Luis is the reason Sadio scored four goals, but somehow, maybe because Luis can obviously keep a last line quite busy which then opens gaps for other players.

“Since his return (from the Africa Cup of Nations), Sadio has also had some physical problems; he didn’t feel it, but we could see that he couldn’t use his enormous physicality week after week or every three days – that was the problem.

“I really felt before the City game, ‘OK, that looks physically like Sadio,’ and that’s why he was able to play the game that he played.

“He was super difficult to defend and very helpful and incredibly important to our defense because the first goal he scored you can only get if you try to get there and he did that and you make that run only if you feel fresh enough to do it.”

Salah, on the other hand, seemed tired at times and his usual goal-scoring ability seems to have left him for the time being.

Klopp isn’t worried, however, as scoring responsibility has been taken by Mane, Diogo Jota and, somewhat unexpectedly, Ibrahima Konate, with the centre-back opening the scoring in his last three games.

“It’s a perfectly normal spell that Mo goes through. We’ve talked about all the physical demands he’s been through over the past few months so it’s totally normal,” added the Liverpool manager.


Mohamed Salah’s goal drought continued against Manchester City (Adam Davy/PA)

“I really enjoyed the game against City, it was a really good game of football and it’s only a matter of time before he scores.

“He was unlucky for a few moments and we all know if you’re not lucky as a striker you don’t even try.

“It’s been close enough a few times now. The moment will definitely come. I am very happy with the performance he showed a few days ago.”

Asked if he has reason to discuss his form with the 29-year-old, Klopp added: “Not really, it depends. You have to watch it and then I have to make a decision as to whether it’s necessary, whether we talk or not.

“We’ve had many conversations over the time we’ve worked together, but there’s no need for that at this particular time.

“We talk about the situation, we talk about the normal things about what he has to do in the game, the game plan and how to spot the opponent, but it’s totally individual to each player.”

https://www.independent.ie/sport/soccer/its-a-completely-normal-spell-mo-is-going-through-jurgen-klopp-backing-salah-to-end-goal-drought-41563729.html ‘It’s a perfectly normal phase that Mo is going through’ – Jurgen Klopp backs Salah to end goal drought

Fry Electronics Team

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