Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has hinted that three of his ‘Fab Four’ could be unavailable for the FA Cup third tie against Everton on Friday. But Mohamed Salah and Philippe Coutinho missed Liverpool’s 2-1 victory over Burnley on Monday due to injury.
Sadio Mane was the only member of the ‘Fab Four’ to start the game and open the scoring for the Reds, while Roberto Firmino made a substitute appearance in the second-half at Turf Moor. After a positive result at Burnley which helps the Reds keep in touch with Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea, they now swiftly turn their attention to the FA Cup tie against Merseyside rivals Everton later this week.
However, Klopp could be without Salah, Coutinho and Mane for contrary reasons. The Liverpool manager confirmed Coutinho is a “doubt” to face Everton while both Salah and Mane will fly to Ghana in order to attend the Confederation of African Football’s (CAF) player of the year award, just 24 hours before Liverpool host Sam Allardyce’s Everton.
Both Liverpool players have been shortlisted for the player of the year award, alongside Borussia Dortmund’s Gabon international striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
Klopp claims he couldn’t stand in the way of the duo attending the important ceremony in Accra.
“We have everything organised. We have two of the three best African players in our squad. We have to show them respect,” Klopp was quoted in a report by Sky Sports.
“If it had been a matchday they wouldn’t have asked, but the night before is fine. We sleep in a hotel, they sleep in a plane. That is all the difference, the modern world.”
Salah, who scored the goal that took Egypt to their first World Cup since 1990 as well as 23 in 29 appearances for Liverpool this season, won the BBC African Footballer of the Year award in December.
The 25-year-old missed Liverpool’s game against Burnley with a slight groin injury and Klopp says he is a doubt for the meeting with Everton regardless of his travel.
“If Mo is not fit, it will not be for that (travelling),” Klopp added. “For our side, it is just a sign of respect. I had (Pierre-Emerick) Aubameyang (at Borussia Dortmund) and there is nothing more important than to go there.”
Presumably, Klopp will make a host of changes against Everton and aim to get into the next round of FA Cup.