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Liverpool’s Jürgen Klopp Discusses Balotelli Agent Comments And Mamadou Sakho Future

Liverpool's German manager Jurgen Klopp looks on before the English Premier League football match between Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool at White Hart Lane in London, on August 27, 2016. / AFP / JUSTIN TALLIS / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or 'live' services. Online in-match use limited to 75 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club/league/player publications. / (Photo credit should read JUSTIN TALLIS/AFP/Getty Images)

Liverpool resume Premier League duties this weekend with their first home of the season against champions Leicester City.

Manager Jürgen Klopp was speaking to the media for the first time since a fairly hectic transfer deadline day, when a number of players left Anfield.

One player who did not leave, despite every effort by the club to facilitate it, was Mamadou Sakho. Liverpool had told the French international defender that it was in his best interests to find a temporary club for the season, in order to get fit and recover from a turbulent few months mentally for the 26-year-old.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - AUGUST 22:  (THE SUN OUT, THE SUN ON SUNDAY OUT) Mamadou Sakho of Liverpool during a training session at Melwood Training Ground on August 22, 2016 in Liverpool, England.  (Photo by Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

However, he rejected loan approaches from teams such as West Brom and Stoke, and he remains at Anfield despite not knowing when (or even if) he’ll play again this season.

Klopp, though, insists that any decision about whether to play Sakho will have to wait until he is fully fit, and even then the manager doesn’t know when that will be:

“Now it is about making Mama fit – which he isn’t after this long time with suspension and injury – and we will see what happens. 

“I have no idea what happens when because it is who plays how, who performs when, our results. At the end Mama knows and I know and from my side that is enough.

“It’s not a problem. He doesn’t have to gain my trust. He didn’t play football for a long time, he needs to play football. That’s difficult here because the other players are fit. 

“We had to speak about it before the window closes – that’s what I did. I’m not silly enough to forget good performances.

“We have one more good centre-half so it is all good but for him it needs time.”

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - AUGUST 12:  (THE SUN OUT, THE SUN ON SUNDAY OUT) Jurgen Klopp manager of Liverpool during a Press Conference at Melwood Training Ground on August 12, 2016 in Liverpool, England.  (Photo by Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

Though Klopp was relatively forthcoming regarding updates on Sakho, he would not be drawn on responding fully to comments made by Mino Raiola earlier this week.

The agent of Mario Balotelli has been very vocal in criticisng Liverpool’s treatment of the Italian striker – even going so far as to call the boss “a piece of sh*t” at one point – but Klopp refuse to sink to Raiola’s level, and when asked how much the comments affected him, he answered:

“0.0%.

“He can say what he wants…..it’s a free world. I’m not interested in things like this.

“I know him, that’s all. Not interested. All good. Free world.”

Italian-born Dutch football agent Mino Raiola speaks to journalists on September 2, 2016 during presentation of Nice's football club new signings at the Allianz Riviera stadium in Nice, southeastern France. / AFP / VALERY HACHE        (Photo credit should read VALERY HACHE/AFP/Getty Images)

Attention then turned back to this weekend’s match against Leicester. The Reds will play in front of the newly-renovated Anfield main stand for the first time, and the manager feels that the extra capacity in the ground can make a massive difference to his team’s performance:

“8,000 more fans in the stadium. That’s more power and we should use this wonderful opportunity.”

Klopp went on to confirm that Sadio Mané will be fully fit for the clash on Saturday, but that Emre Can and Ragnar Klavan will definitely miss out through injury.

Loris Karius has returned to training having sustained a broken hand in pre-season, but Simon Mignolet is likely to continue in goal for the time being at least.

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Author: The PA Team

This article was written by a member of The PA Team.