Peter Crouch believes that in-house rivalry at Liverpool will help keep everyone on their toes
Former Liverpool striker Peter Crouch admits that while Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane aren’t the best of friends, the competitive spirit shared between them will benefit the Reds.
Sadio Mane appeared visibly upset to be substituted during Liverpool rampant 7-0 win over Crystal Palace on Sunday. Salah replaced him shortly before the hour mark and went on to score a brace in the game.
Manager Jurgen Klopp was forced to clarify his forward’s behaviour after the match and claimed that all was well.
“Mane was not angry because Mo was coming on,” Klopp told BT Sport.
“He was not happy because he had a look at the watch and he didn’t stay on until after the free-kick.
“You cannot do everything; they are human beings. After the game, it was completely fine. It’s all good.”
However, Crouch firmly believes that in-house rivalry is healthy among an ambitious group of players.
“There is only a problem around something like this if a team are losing,” he explained to the Daily Mail.
“Liverpool have won everything over the past two years, and I would expect them to retain the Premier League, too, given the form they have hit. But don’t kid yourself that a competition isn’t going on between Salah and Mane.
“Every forward player is selfish, and these two will want to score as many goals as they possibly can — Salah, in particular, looks obsessed with his numbers right now.
— Premier League (@premierleague) December 22, 2020
“Salah came here as a winger, but he has developed into one of Europe’s most prolific forwards; a goal machine. He was in the right place for his first at Crystal Palace and his second, to complete the 7-0 rout was absolutely beautiful.
Crouch claimed that the fact that Salah and Mane aren’t best buddies wasn’t a big deal.
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) December 22, 2020
“Mane’s face, having been substituted, was a picture. He was furious and rightly so because when you smell blood as a striker, the last thing you want is to be taken off.
“Are he and Salah the best of friends? I doubt it. But it doesn’t matter. I had strike partners who I knew never liked me. It never prevented me (from) getting on with my job.”