A failed doping test that was later overturned. A pre-season injury and a falling out with the manager. Nearly a year without the chance to play first team football. It hasn’t been a good time for Mamadou Sakho on Merseyside of late, and on Tuesday, he finally got his move away.
Most fans believe his loan to Crystal Palace is confirmation that he will never again play for Liverpool, though that it was only a loan rather than a permanent deal means waiting for the summer to see if the club can find Sakho a new permanent home. Jürgen Klopp, though, is leaving the window cracked open.
“Who knows was can happen in half a year?” Klopp said when asked at his pre-match press conference today if Sakho’s deadline day Palace move served as confirmation that his Liverpool career was well and truly over. “We’ve already seen what can be changed in the space of a month.
“This isn’t a moment for me to give advice to Mamadou Sakho, and if I give him advice it will be personally and not on the TV. I think he should concentrate on the job at Crystal Palace. We’ll concentrate on the job that we are doing here. The loan is a solution for this moment. We can wait to see what happens.”
Those hoping for an eventual return to Anfield for Sakho will be eager to find the positive, though of course it may be nothing more at the end of the day than the manager seeing no value in speaking negatively about a player when he knows the club will need to find a new home for him in the summer.
Of course, if Sakho is impressive enough—if his efforts can lift Palace to safety—then anything is possible. But even then, it wouldn’t seem likely. Jürgen Klopp has left the window cracked open, allowing fans to hope for an eventual Sakho return, but it’s a very, very small crack.