Jurgen Klopp revealed Mohamed Salah was in need of a rest in an attempt to explain his decision to bench the Liverpool star for Saturday’s trip to Crystal Palace.
The Egypt international has again been one of the driving force’s behind his side’s impressive start to the season and scored his 14th goal of the campaign in the midweek win over Tottenham which took the Reds three points clear at the top.
Klopp, however, opted to shuffle his pack for the game at Selhurst Park with his most prolific forward named on the substitutes’ bench.
Explaining his decision, Klopp told BT Sport: ‘We want to have the option to change he played last four games nearly full so it was clear we tried to change today a little bit. Mo can come on and maybe and make a difference that’s the plan.’
Overall Klopp made four changes with Joel Matip returning to the starting XI following the back spasm he picked up against Fulham, while Naby Keita was also handed an opportunity to impress from the stat.
Klopp added: ‘Joel is fit again and Naby trained really well, Curtis (Jones) played a lot of games for us as well. We wanted to bring in as many fresh legs in as possible without losing the structure, without losing the rhythm and all these kinds of things.
‘We need all the boys and Naby especially. He had two two exceptional sessions it was like the Naby we all knew before he got injured from time to time.’
Salah raised eyebrows earlier on Saturday following the publication of an interview he gave to Spanish outlet AS in which he appeared to throw his long-term future at Liverpool into a measure of doubt.
Asked who he would prefer to join out of Real Madrid and Barcelona, he said: ‘Who knows what will happen in the future, but right now I am focused on winning the Premier League and the Champions League with Liverpool again.
‘That’s a tough question (how long will I stay), but right now I can say that everything is in the hands of the club.
‘Of course I want to break records here and, I repeat, all the club records, but everything is in the hands of the club.’
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