Speaking at the pre-game presser for the game against Newcastle United, Liverpool FC manager Jürgen Klopp was quizzed on the prospect of losing Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane, and Naby Keïta, for the African Cup of Nations in January.
The Reds boss is facing the prospect of being without at least two members of that trio for a month from the start of January. However, that doesn’t mean he is likely to dip into the transfer market, which probably shouldn’t be surprising for those who have paid attention to the January transfer window in the past.
“I am happy with the squad and we still have options,” Klopp said “We knew three would be qualified and be there and we knew that at least two of them will go pretty far in the tournament.
“Can you be prepared for something like that, properly, perfectly? Like a one-for-one replacement for Sadio, a replacement for Mo, one replacement for Naby? That’s tricky in each situation.”
Though there have been rumours this month both of the tournament being cancelled and being started earlier, for now the African Cup of Nations is set to be played in Cameroon between 9 January and 6 February.
The last time the tournament was played, back in 2019, Algeria beat out Mane and Senegal in the final.
“The thing is there are so many games coming up,” Klopp added “That is the most intense period now—but then we have a lot of games when Mo and Naby and Sadio are not here.”
“That means we have to find line-ups for these games, even when we have cup competitions we have to find line-ups for these games as well, and that is the situation, so you can never be perfectly prepared for this [but] we are quite confident we will find solutions.”