Liverpool v Villarreal - UEFA Champions League


'You can see': Hargreaves claims one Liverpool player needed to be calmed down after what Klopp did tonight

Jurgen Klopp had to try and calm Sadio Mané down after he came off for Liverpool against Villarreal tonight. The Reds’ no.10 scored his side’s second goal.

Owen Hargreaves spotted Jurgen Klopp trying to calm Sadio Mané down after the Liverpool boss substituted him tonight. Mané left the pitch on 73 minutes for Diogo Jota – about 15 minutes after he’d scored the Reds’ second.

But he was visibly unhappy with the decision and clearly wanted to remain on the pitch. Hargreaves, doing commentary for BT Sport, says Klopp tried to calm Mané down with a hug.

“You can see his frustration,” he said. “Klopp has given him a big hug to try and calm him down.

“That rotation has worked really well for Liverpool, but he wants to be out there”

Jurgen Klopp has a tough Liverpool job

We have no idea how Klopp manages his squad properly right now. This was undeniably the right decision, though, even if Mané wasn’t thrilled. He wanted to be out there striving for more goals – bringing him off almost feels unfair.

But Liverpool have massive game after massive game right now. Next up is a trip to in-form Newcastle United and Liverpool need a fully fit and firing Mané for that one. The substitution essentially guarantees he starts that in an important role.

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Because make no mistake – Mané has been electrifying recently. His move into a central, False 9 role was a tremendous success and he now appears to be first-choice for the role.

Mané has been so good, in fact, that we were tipping him to rival Mohamed Salah for Liverpool’s Player of the Season a couple of weeks ago. He’s consistently delivered since then, too, including an all-important goal against Villarreal tonight.

We’ll want him out there, leading the line against Newcastle. Klopp, with a sub and a hug, made sure that happened.

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