Liverpool midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum has said that he finds accusations of diving against Sadio Mane made by Pep Guardiola “strange”.
Manchester City boss Guardiola set the tone for the debate around Sunday’s clash between the sides when he claimed simulation was a key part of Reds winger Mane’s game, with the story developing throughout the week.
Guardiola and Klopp have both expanded on the comments while Mane has also given his opinion and now, Wijnaldum has been questioned over the comments.
Speaking to reporters – as quoted by the Daily Mail – the Dutchman insisted that he has no qualms with Guardiola’s opinion about his teammate.
“I heard what he said,” the midfielder said. “He gave his opinion about us and the way he thinks. Nothing bad in that. That is his opinion.
“In his opinion Sadio is a diver. What can you say about that? I didn’t see the Villa one back [when Mane was booked for diving], so it’s difficult to give my opinion on that, but I can’t remember Sadio doing it before. Now we have VAR as well, so…
‘How many players of ours have had a yellow card for diving? Sadio was the first, I think? So to say that we are divers, I think it’s a little bit strange. That’s my opinion.”
Liverpool can move nine points clear of City at the top of the Premier League table with victory on Sunday.