Jan Molby: Why Liverpool can cope without Sadio Mane
The former Liverpool midfielder believes Jurgen Klopp's squad is equipped for Sadio Mane's absence in January
Liverpool are equipped to survive without Sadio Mane during the Africa Cup of Nations in January, according to Jan Molby.
The Senegal international could be unavailable between 14 January and 5 February at the start of next year depending on his national team’s success in the competition.
Mane has proven a key part of Jurgen Klopp’s side since his £34m summer move to the Merseyside club from their Premier League rivals Southampton.
The African forward scored twice in Liverpool’s 6-1 victory over Watford at Anfield in their last Premier League game before the international break.
The 24-year-old has netted six goals and has made two assists in 10 Premier League appearances in the 2016-17 campaign so far.
Former Liverpool midfielder Molby isn’t worried about Mane’s upcoming involvement in the Africa Cup of Nations despite his current form for Liverpool.
“It was nice to see Sadio Mane back in the goals and producing a proper all-round performance to enjoy,” Molby wrote in his Liverpool Echo column.
“He’s been scoring his goals at Anfield mainly, which is fine, because it’s proving really useful in games they might have struggled with last season.
“After a brilliant start, he hit a little bit of a flat spot in recent weeks, but that doesn’t really matter. He’s a new signing and that’s going to happen.
“The thing about Mane is even if he isn’t playing at full pelt, he brings something to the team, because he’s different to the other attackers, stretches the play, possesses proper pace. He was at full pelt against Watford though, and it was great to see.
“He’ll be missed when he goes to the Africa Cup of Nations in January, but this is a real team effort at Anfield nowadays, and everybody is sharing the load.”
Mane has missed one Premier League game for Klopp’s side this term – a 2-0 loss to Burnley at Turf Moor which is their only defeat of the season.