Jurgen Klopp has confirmed Sadio Mane picked up an injury during Liverpool’s 2-1 triumph over Chelsea in the Premier League on Sunday. Liverpool made it six wins from six at the start of the new domestic season and re-established their five-point lead at the top of the table thanks to their hard-fought victory at Stamford Bridge.
First-half goals from Trent Alexander-Arnold and Roberto Firmino put the Reds in the ascendancy, but Chelsea responded after the restart and an N’Golo Kante strike with 20 minutes remaining set up a grandstand finish.
Indeed, Liverpool’s cause was damaged further as, shortly after Kante’s goal, they were forced to withdraw Mane with what Klopp later described as an “awful combination” of a knock and a dead leg.
James Milner came on to replace Mane and Liverpool held on for all three points, but there was concern regarding Mane’s fitness after the match and Klopp admitted the Senegal international was simply not able to continue. “It’s a knock on the bone of the knee and a dead leg – that is an awful combination,” the German told reporters.
“He tried everything but there was one counter situation where he really tried and, on a non-dead leg day, he will get that ball but there was no chance.”
The severity of the injury is not yet clear, although it was already unlikely that Mane would play any part in Liverpool’s next match, which is an away clash with League One outfit MK Dons in the Carabao Cup third round on Wednesday.
Liverpool will instead be keeping their fingers crossed that the 27-year-old is able to return for Saturday’s Premier League trip to Bramall Lane to take on Sheffield United, while if the problem proves more serious than first feared, then he could also miss the top-flight game against Leicester and Champions League clash with Salzburg before the international break.
The Reds certainly won’t want to be without Mane for an extended period of time, as the former Southampton star has picked up where he left off from last season by scoring four goals in six Premier League appearances to date this term.