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"That's why" - Jurgen Klopp blamed for Sadio Mane's Liverpool exit in surprise comments

Alfie Culshaw

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"That's why" - Jurgen Klopp blamed for Sadio Mane's Liverpool exit in surprise comments

Former Liverpool midfielder Salif Diao has blamed Jurgen Klopp for Sadio Mane’s exit this summer, claiming the player didn’t have the love he needed at Anfield.

Mane spent six years on Merseyside after arriving from Southampton for £34 million in 2016, managing 269 appearances and scoring 120 goals.

The Senegalese international contributed to the Reds’ Premier League title win in 2020, as well as their Champions League triumph in 2019.

This stellar spell in the North West was brought to an end this summer, as the 30-year-old opted to move on and join Bayern Munich for £35 million.

While Mane has started quickly in Germany, scoring five times in his first 11 games for the European giants, Liverpool have endured an inconsistent start to the new campaign without him, as they currently sit 8th after six games.

This below par form has prompted many to criticise the decision to let Mane leave in the summer, and Diao believes that there may have been a breakdown in communication between Jurgen Klopp and the player.

Speaking to the Liverpool ECHO, Diao said: “I think he has been here for a couple of years and I think at some point he thought he did not have the love he needed really, here at Anfield."

"I’m not talking about the fans, for him I think it was more with the manager."

“Things weren’t really going on as they should be so that’s why he decided to go for a new challenge. I think as a top player, every time you stay 4-5 years at a top club, sometimes it’s good to go for a new challenge.”

New signing Darwin Nunez, who essentially replaced Mane in the Liverpool squad this summer, has struggled to hit the ground running, having scored just twice in his first six games.

Due to the Uruguayan's issues, the scrutiny around the departure of Mane is somewhat inevitable, but many feel this was a natural progression in the rebuild of what is an ageing squad.

Liverpool’s fruitful front three of the Klopp era in Mane, Roberto Fimino and Mohamed Salah are all on the wrong side of 30, and the club’s hierarchy felt replacing each of them in different ways was the way to rebuild. 

They invested in Salah, cashed in on Mane and are allowing Firmino’s contract to expire. In the short-term this may require some adaptation, but in the mid to long-term, it could appear a smart strategy.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Liverpool, Sadio Mane, Jurgen Klopp

Alfie Culshaw
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