Sadio Mane confident Liverpool can deal with hectic December

Liverpool is facing a frantic December, but forward Sadio Mane says the Club World Cup could provide a huge boost to Jurgen Klopp's team.

Sadio Mane is eyeing silverware   -  Getty Images

Sadio Mane believes winning the Club World Cup could give Liverpool the adrenaline surge it might need to drive home its Premier League title push.

Jurgen Klopp's side will have Flamengo among its trophy rivals in Qatar next month and has complicated its build-up to the FIFA tournament with Wednesday's 1-1 Champions League draw against Napoli.

A win would have made sure of a last-16 place with a game to spare, allowing manager Klopp to possibly rest some stars for the Group E finale at Salzburg.

Instead, Liverpool may need a point to be sure of qualification and a win to seal top spot, making the trip to Austria one with high stakes.

And with holding midfielder Fabinho nursing an ankle injury that could keep him sidelined for a significant period, Liverpool is a key man down.

 

It remains to be seen whether the Brazil international can return by the time the Club World Cup comes around, but Mane is in no doubt about the potential significance of that competition.

"To win games and win trophies motivates players all the time," the forward said. "Hopefully we're going to win it and give us high energy for us to go again until the end of the season."

Front-runner Liverpool has begun its Premier League campaign with a staggering 12 wins and one draw from its opening 13 fixtures, and it faces Brighton and Hove Albion at Anfield on Saturday.

A hectic December awaits, with matches and travel that should test its resources to the limit. Klopp will need to shuffle his line-ups, yet Mane is confident the Reds can overcome the obstacles in their way to make it a successful month.

 

He said: "We are Liverpool, we have a big squad. We have many players who can play. It's part of football and we have to deal with it. We know it won’t be easy.

"Tiredness is in the head. If the coach needs us, we'll play to help the team."

Mane dismissed any suggestion he threw himself to the ground in an effort to win Liverpool a first-half penalty against Napoli, after he went down when surrounded by defenders.

The appeals for a spot-kick were waved away, much to the host's frustrations.

"I think it was a penalty, sure. I wasn't diving like usual!" Mane said, with a chuckle, having been at the centre of subsequently retracted diving accusations from Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola at the start of this month.

 

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