Jurgen Klopp has refuted suggestions from Pep Guardiola that Sadio Mane is a diver.
The Liverpool boss, who was speaking at Melwood on Monday ahead of Tuesday’s Group E Champions League clash with Genk, was asked about the Man City boss’ weekend comments.
Guardiola said: “Sometimes he’s diving, sometimes he has this talent to score incredible goals in the last minute. He’s a talent.”
Klopp’s response was typically non-confrontational, and the German said he had already refused to answer questions about Guardiola’s comments by the tabloid press.
The Reds boss tried to swerve the subject once more, but he did offer his thoughts and questioned just how Guardiola knew so quickly after the game what had happened with Mane at Villa Park.
Klopp said: “I am not in a Man City mood at the moment. I am 100% sure he only talks about Sadio. Don’t know how he could have known about the incident so soon after the game. Sadio is not a diver! Contact at Villa, no penalty but was contact. It’s not like he jumped over.
“I am absolutely not in the mood to talk about Man City. Genk or us, whatever but not Man City.”
Klopp, who told the club’s website that it was unlikely that any of Joel Matip, Xherdan Shaqiri and Nathaniel Clyne would be fit to face Genk, did admit that he could well freshen up his side with some fresh legs.
Klopp was also keen to point out that his Liverpool side’s focus is on Genk and not on Sunday’s date with Man City.
“For the people at Anfield, we need to focus on this match, same as the players. I don’t doubt my players. We don’t think about City, my players won’t do that.”
Asked about the pressure of being heavy favourites on Tuesday night, Klopp added: “It’s a challenge but a nice one to have, means you have a good team,. It’s not the biggest problem to have. It’s 100% clear we have to put in a proper shift.
“We have to use the spaces. The group is still open and we need everyone. They can still make Europa League so they still have targets. We need to respect them. Story of last 2 years, we were always spot on when we needed to be.”