It feels like it was just yesterday when we were sitting around, counting how many days it’d been since Sadio Mané was last on the pitch (112). But the counting can apparently stop really, really soon. Like, this Tuesday soon.
“The plan is for Sadio to start team training this week,” Klopp told the Echo, presumably while struggling to hide the glee we’re all feeling about this. “He trained on Friday for the first time with the little team — six players — at home. Everybody is positive that he’s there and finally we can use Sadio again, which will be great.”
“He’s been out for so long. After a crazy long time, it will be so good to have him back.”
It sounds like everything is underway for Mané to join the first team as they fly to Germany for their second training camp on Wednesday. And as excited as Klopp is about Mané’s return, he also can’t wait to talk about how great it’ll be to have Mané and Salah playing together.
“[In some games] Sadio could play on the right and Mo could play as the No 10. No problem,” Klopp said when asked if Mané’s position could change. “Mo can even play as the No 9. He was the striker, the second striker, at times for Roma. We have lots of different options.”
“Sadio has played on the left before. Most of the time it’s actually easier for players to play on the ‘other side’. These two players have the ability and the speed to play on either wing.
“In this moment it’s about having lots of different options. We will consider all of them and then make decisions for specific games.”
And while this sounds like the stuff of dreams, Klopp remains practical, especially with the weight of Liverpool’s injury-laden previous season fresh in everyone’s minds.
“I like this view but the problem is I can’t ignore that a lot of things could happen,” Klopp added. “We need to keep them healthy, confident and in a good rhythm.”