“Very important” Jurgen Klopp backs Takumi Minamino to shine in the absence of Mo Salah and Sadio Mane.
Liverpool boss, Jurgen Klopp insists they ‘desperately’ need forward Takumi Minamino to stay fit to cover for the absences of Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane.
Klopp has revealed that he is relying on the Likes of Minamino, Roberto Firmino, and Diogo Jota in the absence of two of his first-choice front-line out for a month at the Africa Cup of Nations and Divock Origi still injured.
The 26-year-old has netted nine times in 45 appearances, but two-thirds of those goals have come in just five Carabao Cup qualifiers, with the competition offering him his best chances since arriving from RB Salzburg in the winter of 2020.
Minamino has managed just four Premier League starts for the club, but it looks like he will have a big role to play in the weeks ahead.
“Taki was injured. Nothing serious but serious enough that he couldn’t play,’ Klopp said after Liverpool’s Sunday’s 4-1 FA Cup third-round win over League One Shrewsbury.
“It’s not the longest rehab in his life hopefully – or maybe it was the longest rehab hopefully.
“But he is back and very important for us, very, very important – especially when we have a lot of games coming up and we know that two of our main guys up front are not here”
“It’s good. I liked Taki a lot when he came on (as a substitute). He’s actually in a really good shape but, of course, the injury interrupted it slightly.
“But now he’s back, it’s good and we need him desperately.”
The Japanese International Is expected to lead the Reds attack when Liverpool host Arsenal in postponed Carabo cup first leg semifinal clash on Thursday, 13, January.