Liverpool beat Manchester United on Thursday night for Jurgen Klopp to claim his first victory at Old Trafford as the Reds’ manager, but post-match the boss had to face questions on one his players’ apparent show of petulance.
Sadio Mane was left on the subs bench for the crucial game, with Diogo Jota picked on the left of the front three in his place.
The Portuguese attacker notched the equaliser in style with a back-heel from close range, as Liverpool came from behind to win 4-2 and keep their top-four hopes alive.
Mane appeared as a second-half substitute, but after full-time as his manager approached him for a congratulatory fist-bump, the Senegal international waved Klopp off and refused the acknowledgement of the result.
The Reds have had issues in front of goal over the past few weeks and Mane’s goal rate has been much-reduced this season, with Klopp saying he made a late call over the line-up, but refuted the suggestion that there was any issue between himself and his player.
“No problem, yesterday I made the late decision in training to decide on Diogo,” Klopp said.
“The boys are used that I explain [line-up] things usually, but there was no time.
“It’s all good.”
The three points keep Liverpool in the hunt for a Champions League spot, leaving them four points behind Chelsea with one game in hand.
Klopp’s team will at worst finish level on points with Leicester if they win their remaining three games, as the third-placed Foxes and Chelsea meet in the Premier League as well as the FA Cup final.
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