Jurgen Klopp heavily rotated his Liverpool team against Southampton last night which led to worry about the fitness of key players ahead of the last day of the Premier League season and the Champions League final. However, a new update has emerged that will relieve supporters.
In a Q&A session on The Athletic website, Liverpool reporter James Pearce gave a promising response to a concerned supporter who was worried about Sadio Mane’s fitness as he did not appear in the matchday squad at St Mary’s on Tuesday evening.
Pearce gave a promising four-word response when asked if the Senegalese winger had picked up an injury: “Just rested I believe.”
Supporters will be delighted that Mane was just rested and hasn’t picked up an injury after Virgil van Dijk, Fabinho and Mo Salah have all had fitness worries since the FA Cup Final, especially when you consider how effective he has been for Liverpool over the last few months.
The 29-year-old has scored 22 goals and contributed five assists in 49 appearances this season, with three of his goals scored in important knock-out games in the Champions League. He’s also bagged eight Premier League goals since the turn of the year, proving highly effective and making a huge impact on Liverpool’s quadruple challenge.
With that being said, Klopp clearly made the right decision in resting the attacker in the victory over Southampton last night and has given him the opportunity to recover ahead of the final game of the season and the trip to Paris to face Real Madrid in the Champions League final, two games his positive influence and impact will be desperately needed in.
The German coach recently held high praise for Mane when he scored the winner against Aston Villa last week to keep Liverpool’s dream of a second Premier League alive.
“He’s a machine, I told him after the game,” Klopp claimed.
“Massive player. [His] physicality is brutal, this mix of technique, desire, and physicality in this moment when everybody has a few yards in the legs…you can see it with him to be honest. Top goal, just fantastic, a world-class player.”
It will be interesting to see whether Klopp involves the forward in his line-up on the last game of the season against Wolverhampton Wanderers or saves him for the Champions League final in Paris. Either way there is no doubt that unleashing Mane in the team over the next two games will lead to more outstanding performances.