(Video) Jurgen Klopp on “two mates” Sadio Mane and Mo Salah as they return to teammates after being international rivals

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It’s been an intense start to the year for both Sadio Mane and Mo Salah but Jurgen Klopp is confident they will deal with the rest of the season professionally.

Speaking with the media ahead of the Watford game, the 54-year-old said: “Obviously I’m really happy for Sadio, that he could make it. And I’m obviously very disappointed and feel with Mo.

“I don’t think the situation with the penalty and the laser was particularly cool, that’s clear as well. So I feel for him, but I’m happy for Sadio as well. That’s football, we are used to that, that’s all the time like this.

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“It’s different when two mates in such a big game play against each other, but they both are top professionals now again, very emotional people as well, but I’m pretty sure they both will deal with it in the right way.

“There’s no doubt about it that Senegal is probably, in the moment, the best team in Africa and Egypt did really well. They really took them to the wire and twice in a penalty shootout, so that’s the closest you can get in a game like this.

“Senegal is an extremely talented squad and Egypt did really well. I’m not sure if they can see it like this exactly, but from my point of view they should because you cannot get closer than they did, and it was a bit unlucky with the draw and stuff like this.

“I think pretty much against all other teams Egypt would have qualified for the World Cup but because it was Senegal again, it was not enough. That’s it”.

There won’t have been many other occasions that two star players within the same team have competed in three such highly emotive games, in three months and as rivals – before then returning to teammates again.

There’s no way that Mo Salah won’t be upset by the events of the AFCON final and missing out on the World Cup and it’s the manager’s job to transfer that to positive performances for the Reds, whilst trying to continue Sadio Mane’s great international form.

Let’s hope they prove the boss right and deal with it in the right way.

You can watch the clip from Klopp about Mane and Salah via our Twitter account @empireofthekop or you can watch the full press conference on our YouTube page.

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