Liverpool boss Klopp admits missing Mane and Salah: You can't replace them | OneFootball

Liverpool boss Klopp admits missing Mane and Salah: You can't replace them

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Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp admits they've struggled without Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane after losing the forwards to the Africa Cup of Nations.

The Reds travel to Crystal Palace on Sunday having kept clean sheets in each of their last three matches having previously only managed just two shut-outs in their 10 games since the start of December.

Explaining how Liverpool have adapted without the attacking duo, and Naby Keita, Klopp reiterated his faith in his squad to always get results regardless of who is available to him.

“It's essential (having a strong defence), it's the only way you can do it," Klopp told reporters. “When you lose key players to injuries or tournaments, the solution is not that you will be flying in the next game, that you say, 'okay, now we score five or six and will create chances like hell'.

“Wherever they are on the pitch, if they're strikers, midfielders or whatever, you lose key players and you have to adapt. In our case it was 100% clear that we need to be solid, rock-solid. We have to be and we know that, it's a clear agreement.

“Maybe you don't see it all the time but we are defending first, let me say it like this. We have to be organised, that is the basis for everything we do.

“In this moment I can see outstanding commitment to our defending. Everybody is 100% involved in everything because they understand it is now more important than ever. That's helpful that we didn't concede."

Liverpool will be without Salah, Mane and Keita for the trip to Palace but could have the trio back for next month's FA Cup clash with Cardiff City depending on their progress in the continental tournament.

And Klopp is looking forward to welcoming them back to his squad, insisting it gives him no added satisfaction when his side win without their services.

“It's not greater satisfaction, no. I know we can do it without them," he said. “Do I want to do it always without them? Why? No!

“It's just we react to these kind of things to stay in the game and to stay on top of the game for as long as possible. But we all do that with no time.

“It's not like while they are still here we train like they are not here anymore. That makes no sense. When they are gone, we have three days until the next game. Let's have a look. That's the situation and it makes it really tricky. I don't get more satisfaction, it's as good as it is when they are here and we win football games.

“I was never in doubt that it was possible but I knew always that it was difficult because players of their quality, you don't replace like this. It's just not the case.

“That's why I am looking forward to when they are back but I like as well the response of the squad in the moment. That's true."

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