Liverpool boss Klopp says appealing Mane’s red card was a waste of time
Mane, 25, was shown a straight red card in Liverpool’s 5-0 defeat to Manchester City in the Premier League on Saturday after his high boot caught goalkeeper Ederson in the face.
Liverpool’s excessive punishment appeal was rejected following a hearing by an independent regulatory commission.
The Senegal international will now be suspended for Liverpool’s Premier League matches against Burnley and Leicester, in addition to a trip to the latter in the EFL Cup.
Mane will be available for Liverpool’s opening Champions League fixture against Sevilla tonight, and speaking on the eve of match Klopp admits he knew the appeal would end in failure.
“I didn’t expect something different,” said the Liverpool manager. “It was really our duty to appeal. But it was a waste of time obviously.
“Our appeal was right because I could say if we would appealed the red card but we didn’t.
Sadio Mane clattered into Ederson, leaving him with a nasty cut to the face
“We only appealed the length of the suspension. I never thought it would happen but only because I am used to it to things like this. There were a lot of situations which were similar.
“All the other players were lucky only Sadio was not lucky. And obviously Ederson was not lucky. It looks really awful and he was also lucky nothing more serious happened.”
Klopp maintained that Mane did not deliberately set out to injure Ederson and felt he should have had one game knocked off his ban.
“There was not even a percentage of Sadio which wanted to put the goalkeeper in danger. He wanted to get the ball and it’s important he does that in the next few games,” said Klopp.
“We cannot change this and it’s a sport where this happens. It’s like it is. I don’t blame the ref for the decision. If I saw the boy bleeding I would have made the same decision.
“But one game less would have been right, two and a half, not three and half.”
German goalkeeper Loris Karius will start ahead of Simon Mignolet, although Klopp insists this does not mean he will be first choice as he cryptically hinted at regular rotation between the pair.
“I prefer having a group of good goalkeepers, and that means you have to change things,” said Klopp.
“The game against Arsenal was exactly the same, it was very intense, yes we could have said afterwards it was not a goalkeeper game, but we didn’t know that before.
“Could he prove something? I think he did. He was very cool with the ball, I know for some people too cool with the ball but that can happen with no rhythm, so that now he has had the game it helped him a lot, us also and now he will start.
“Why we think number 1, 2, 3 is fixed until the end of all days? I don’t want to bring that in doubt, but how can you ask if he’s number one?
“By the way, it’s not that he shouldn’t be number one. And then are the all players happy with the decision? I don’t know.”
Klopp also confirmed that Philippe Coutinho will be in his squad to face Sevilla having not featured for the Reds this season following injury amid speculation of a move to Barcelona.
The Reds will check on the fitness of Mohamed Salah who did not train through illness.