Liverpool winger and Senegalese international Sadio Mané was forced to come off after picking up an injury during his country's Africa Cup of Nations qualifying match. The extent of the injury is not definitively known at this point. Though some reports have suggested Mané was taken off as a precautionary measure, other reports have indicated a suspected knee injury, which would be cause for concern.
Mané has made an impressive start to his Liverpool career, and his sole absence thus far from the starting lineup coincided with the team’s staid performance and deflating defeat against Burnley. Manager Jürgen Klopp will now be hoping the rest of the squad's internationals escape further harm, and that Mané's knock does not keep the winger out for an extended spell.
Despite having already qualified for the AFCON tournament back in June of this year, Senegal fielded a strong side against Namibia. Mané was substituted in the 66th minute of what was ultimately a 2-0 victory for group winners Senegal, and his status for the much anticipated home opener against Leicester City is in doubt.
Though there may be some bitterness among Liverpool supporters with the circumstances surrounding Mané’s injury, these are things that come with the territory when building a squad with numerous footballers who are good enough to represent their country. Several key players are currently away on international duty, including Daniel Sturridge, Adam Lallana, Philippe Coutinho, and the already hobbled Emre Can. Liverpool can ill afford to lose another.