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Michael Owen Claims Sadio Mane Isn't Going Down For Penalties To Stop Mohamed Salah Scoring

Ryan Sidle

Published 

Michael Owen Claims Sadio Mane Isn't Going Down For Penalties To Stop Mohamed Salah Scoring

Michael Owen has bizarrely accused Sadio Mane of not going to ground in the penalty area because he's trying to stop Mohamed Salah scoring more goals than him.

Liverpool slumped to their fifth home defeat in-a-row on Thursday night, as Mason Mount's second half goal proved the difference and handed Jurgen Klopp's side an unwanted 129 year-old record.

There wasn't too many chances for the Premier League champions, whose defence of the title has certainly not been good enough so far, though they may have had a penalty.

In the ninth minute of the game Mane looked to get onto the end of Trent Alexander-Arnold's cross into the box, he beat Andreas Christensen to the ball, with the defender sticking out a leg that made contact with the forward.

The former Southampton player might have gone down but instead stayed on his feet, to the annoyance of some Liverpool fans, and the attack eventually died out.

It was the second time in just a number of days that the Senegal forward hasn't gone to ground when he could have won a penalty, with a similar occurrence against Sheffield United at the weekend.

Former Liverpool striker Owen came up with a wild theory, claiming the 28-year-old's refusal to hit the deck is to do with the knowledge it gives Salah the chance to score.

"I couldn't believe he didn't go down there and look, I'm not advocating he does," the former England striker said on Optus Sport.

"It was a great touch and he possibly thought he might get a chance at the end of it ... but he did something similar a week ago [against Sheffield United].

"I just wonder, and it might be a little bit of devious thoughts creeping into my head, Mo Salah is the penalty taker in this team, and if he [Mane] thinks he's getting a chance to score he thinks 'Well I'm going to score, if I don't stay on my feet, Mo Salah's going to get another penalty.'

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"These players have been going for the golden boot for the past couple of seasons.

"It might be a wild sort of theory, but the competitive nature of him and Mo Salah...we've seen them not passing to each other when one of them is in a much better position to the other.

"We're seeing a little bit of selfishness, we're seeing a little bit of disgruntled behaviour - Mo Salah shaking his head (when he was subbed off).

"I just think a couple of times there, I've seen Mane go down for those kind of opportunities...and [to not do it] two games on the spin? It just made me think a little bit."

The two Reds' forwards do have history with their competitive nature boiling over, when Mane was fuming at his teammate for not passing to him, before Mane was substituted off soon after.

Salah got a taste of that rage himself on Thursday night as he was clearly unhappy to be subbed off with the team needing a goal.

Featured Image Credit: Sky Sports

Topics: Liverpool, Chelsea, Football, Sheffield United, Premier League, Michael Owen, Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah

Ryan Sidle
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