Jurgen Klopp: Salah, Mane and Keita are irreplaceable

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Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has no plans to find transfer window solutions for African Nations Cup absentees Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Naby Keita.

The Reds boss could be without at least two members of that trio for a month from the start of January and while Egyptian Salah and Senegal’s Mane will be huge misses, it is difficult to replace them.

“We knew three would be qualified and be there and we knew that at least two of them will go pretty far in the tournament,” said Klopp.

Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane
Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane could be absent for a month due to the African Nations Cup (Mike Egerton/PA)

“Can you be prepared for something like that, properly, perfectly? Like a one-for-one replacement for Sadio, a replacement for Mo, one replacement for Naby?

“That’s tricky in each situation but I am happy with the squad and we have options to play and still to play football.

“The thing is there are so many games coming up when we are still together – that is the most intense period now – but then we have a lot of games when Mo and Naby and Sadio are not here.

“That means we have to find line-ups for these games, even when we have cup competitions we have to find line-ups for these games as well, and that is the situation so you can never be perfectly prepared for this.

“We are quite confident we will find solutions.”

Klopp accepts his side may not be at their best without Salah and Mane but he believes they will find a way to win games to keep them in the title race.

Liverpool midfielder Naby Keita
Naby Keita will be playing for Guinea in January (Joe Giddens/PA)

“Whoever will play in the period when the three boys are not here, will have a plan, and gives us a chance to win a football game,” he added.

“Can we play exactly the same kind of football? Probably not – but who cares? Then we play the football we are able to play then.

“You cannot always have the perfect solution. In this case we are far away from being the perfect solution without these players but we knew it and we now we have to deal with it.”

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