Jurgen Klopp responds to Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane rift rumours at Liverpool

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has opened up on rumours star duo Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane do not get along after the pair returned to the club following a World Cup play-off

Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane are two of Jurgen Klopp’s star players

Sadio Mane’s reaction to knocking Mohamed Salah’s Egypt out of the World Cup shows the incredibly close relationship between the pair.

That’s the view of their Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp, who insists it refutes once and for all the myth his two iconic strikers not only don’t get on, but are intense rivals who want to out-do each other.

Klopp says he was impressed and touched by Mane’s insistence he wouldn’t revel in beating the nation of his team-mate twice in the past month, as Senegal won the Africa Cup of Nations and then qualified for the World Cup finals.

On his return to Anfield after both games, team-mates had planned a ‘celebration’, but out of respect to Salah, the Reds forward asked that the usual ‘ceremony’ to recognise his achievement was cancelled. And Klopp claimed it shows their bond, as team-mates and friends. He said: “No doubt about it they are not only close, they are well educated, they are good boys, they are good humans.

“I really thought Sadio did particularly well with it to be honest and I am sure that Mo appreciates that as well. Even if it is your brother, then imagine he is playing for the other team and you have to play a final and one wins and the other loses. That is not a good situation for anyone. But for sure Sadio and Mo would consider themselves as friends, and they handled it well.”

Both players will return to the starting line up after being rested in the final Liverpool game before their World Cup showdown, as the Reds look to go top of the Premier League against Watford. And the manager’s words put paid to the long held belief amongst cynics that the pair don’t like each other, and are rivals on the pitch, even in the red shirt of their club.

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“No, they are not rivals,” he said. “You play together in a team and both want to score goals. That is normal. We want them to score goals. Yes, there are situations where one doesn’t see the other and doesn’t finish the situation off and then we immediately say, ‘what is the reason for that?’

“(But) there is nothing. That is how it is. We are human beings and from time to time we make wrong decisions, but it is nothing personal. We just want to score a goal and realise a little bit later it was the wrong decision. It has nothing to do with any kind of rivalry with another player on your team, it is just the wrong decision.”

Klopp also believes Salah will bounce back against Watford to show his champion’s mentality, even after the devastation of World Cup exit at the peak of his career. “Mindset-wise it is definitely a case of ‘strike back now, more than ever’. This is his kind of mind-set for sure. That is the reaction that is in Mo. He has no real skills for staying down. We are all down from time to time but has no real skills for that.”

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