Jurgen Klopp relaxed about Mohamed Salah’s Liverpool goal drought

Liverpool manager Juergen Klopp and Liverpool's Mohamed Salah celebrate after their recent Premier League match against Tottenham Hotspur. (Reuters)
Updated 03 April 2019

Jurgen Klopp relaxed about Mohamed Salah’s Liverpool goal drought

  • Salah, who scored 44 times in his maiden season at Anfield, has gone eight matches without finding the net
  • Salah’s success last season means he has attracted more attention from opponents

LONDON: Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp is relaxed about Mohamed Salah’s goalscoring drought, saying the Egyptian forward remains a key part of the title chasers’ attacking armory.
Salah, who scored 44 times in his maiden season at Anfield, has gone eight matches without finding the net but still has 20 goals in 2018/19 and played a pivotal part in the last-gasp winner against Tottenham on Sunday.
“When everybody is talking about ‘he didn’t score in I don’t know how many games’, he doesn’t seem to be bothered about it. I’m not,” Klopp said on Wednesday.
“For sure we didn’t really speak about it. I think if something is clear and obvious you do speak about it. How do you deal with a situation when he scored 40 goals last year?
“His career’s not over. It’s like if he can score this year 20 goals then he’s scored 60 in the last two. Wow, that’s not too bad.”
Salah’s success last season means he has attracted more attention from opponents in the current campaign, often being double-marked.
It has had the effect, though, of benefiting teammates, with Sadio Mane (20 goals) and Roberto Firmino (14) taking on some of the burden.
“Sometimes you need a bit of time to adapt to the new situations and I don’t think he really needed that,” said Klopp on Salah’s overall value to the side and how he has coped with the close attention.
“He’s a threat. He helps us a lot. He deals with all the new situations for him really well.
“If you have only one (goalscorer), you think maybe you rely a bit too much on that. This year we don’t rely on Mo’s goals, but he’s still in a very good position in comparison to all the other players.
“Seventeen (league) goals is a good number, and there are still a lot of games to come. But it was never a problem. We have 79 points — you cannot have that with a lot of problems over the year.”
Liverpool travel to Southampton on Friday and Klopp reported a clean bill of health after a minor injury worry over defender Virgil van Dijk following the win over Tottenham.


Anthony Joshua to face Andy Ruiz for world championship rematch in Saudi Arabia

Updated 20 November 2019

Anthony Joshua to face Andy Ruiz for world championship rematch in Saudi Arabia

RIYADH: British boxer Anthony Joshua will face his Mexican rival, Andy Ruiz Jr, in Saudi Arabia for the World Heavyweight Boxing rematch in Diriyah Arena on December 7.

“I think my father would be happy and proud to watch this event take place in the Kingdom. When my father visited Saudi Arabia 48 years ago, he was warmly welcomed by its people. He repeated his visits when he came to perform Hajj and Umrah,” Rasheda Ali Walsh, daughter of the late boxing legend Muhammad Ali, said of the Clash on the Dunes fight.

This is Walsh’s second visit to Saudi Arabia to attend the World Boxing Championship, which she also attended last year in Jeddah, where she handed the Muhammad Ali Clay Championship Cup to boxer Callum Smith after defeating his opponent George Groves in the super middleweight bout. That championship was the first major tournament hosted by the Kingdom under the supervision of the General Sports Authority.

Commenting on her recent visit Jeddah, Walsh said: “Handing over my father’s cup is my biggest prize. It is not just a great achievement for the world champion, but an honor in itself for my father’s history and career in this sport.”

Joshua is trying to regain his WBA, IBF, WBO and IBO titles after suffering a painful defeat in New York to Ruiz Jr in June. He will be seeking revenge in the historic “Clash on the Dunes” match in front of more than 15,000 boxing fans.

Other professional boxers will also be competing, including Russia’s Alexander Povetkin, who will face his US counterpart Michael Hunter in the qualifying match for the World Boxing Championship.

Croatian star, Filip Hrgovic, will battle for the World Boxing Council Championship’s title with American Eric Molina.

The audience will also have the chance to watch former WBA Champion Scott Koenig return to the boxing circuit after a year-long absence due to injury.

The announcement comes as part of an entertainment season which will include the Formula E Championship and the Diriyah Tennis Cup, as well as equestrian championships in which winners will qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, in Japan.

Tickets are available on www.diriyahseason.sa.