This article is part of Football FanCast’s Pundit View series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent quotes from journalists, pundits, players and managers…
Steve Nicol has become the latest pundit to question the form of Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah, saying they need to be less manic.
It feels like we hear it every time they don’t score. Mane is this, Salah is that, they’re out of form and all the rest of it.
Now, Reds legend Steve Nicol has given his verdict on the pair, simply saying they need to calm things down a bit to get back to their best.
Speaking to ESPN, per GOAL, he said: “I wouldn’t say it’s a concern, I would say maybe I think Klopp needs to try and do something with particularly Salah and Mane.
“Going forward, they lose the ball too often. It’s one thing to try and go at defenders quickly and try to break quickly. But it’s another thing to do it in some sort of… it’s like manic the way they do it.
“If they can just slow it down a little bit, take a little bit more time and think about it a little more then I think the goals will start coming more for those two, if they do that.”
Reason prevails at last. The talk of divides and rifts between the star wingers after the spat at Burnley was bordering on ridiculous. Of course forward players are selfish, they quite literally get paid to score goals.
Nicol’s comments are much more on point though, and it was clear to see in the 1-0 win at Sheffield United on Sunday that the pair are a little frantic at the moment.
Salah lashed four shots at Dean Henderson’s goal but only two were on target and neither of those really troubled the ‘keeper, while Mane missed two huge chances, slashing wildly at one and hooking a close-range effort onto the post.
In general play too, there has been slightly less of the electric link-up between the pair that we have seen in the past, with Roberto Firmino seemingly the only member of the front three stringing things together with little one-twos, flicks and tricks.
As Nicol suggests, it may only take a few deep breaths and a little more care with the ball to get the pair back to their best, and if the Reds are taking 21 points from a possible 21 without their star duo in top form, look out Premier League when they find their shooting boots.