Rumours of a growing rift between Liverpool stars Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane are ‘nonsense’, former Anfield striker John Aldridge insists.
Questions were raised earlier this season over the quality of Salah and Mane’s relationship with each other in the wake of the Reds’ 3-0 defeat of Burnley last month.
Mane was furious with his team-mate after Salah refused to play him through on goal against the Clarets, with the former almost certain to have added a fourth for Liverpool if the pass was made.
He vented his anger at Salah, and also could not contain his emotion when substituted later in the match.
Rivals were hoping these scenes may have proven a rift exists between Salah and Mane – two of Liverpool’s key players – as the Anfield club battle to win their first league championship in 30 years.
However, there do not appear to be any issues as Liverpool have won all four of their Premier League matches since the Turf Moor incident to sit eight points clear at the top of the table.
And Aldridge, who scored 63 goals for the Reds in the 1980s, says there is no problem between Salah and Mane.
“It’s just the way it is,” Aldridge told talkSPORT when asked about Salah’s refused pass to his team-mate.
“They do look for each other; there was a passage of play on Saturday [vs Leicester] where there were three one-twos between them, and it would have been a marvellous goal.
“It’s just been highlighted because of what happened at Burnley.
“But it is nonsense.
“They do look for each other, and they are both world class.
“If it was me, would I pass? No. That’s why I scored 474 goals!
“Of course I would; if somebody is in a much better place of course you play it across to them.”
Liverpool’s closest challengers for the title are Manchester City, though Pep Guardiola’s reigning champions have already suffered two league defeats this season, including Sunday’s shock home loss to Wolves.
Nonetheless, City have experience of winning the Premier League – something Liverpool do NOT have – and that could play a key role in the title race.
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Aldridge does not believe it will have an impact, however, as Liverpool’s experiences from the 2018/19 season could, in fact, help them.
“I think the lads benefited a lot from last year, with the experiences they went through,” he added. “They couldn’t have done much more as they only lost one game last year, but were just pipped at the post.
“But we are the European champions – that goes a long way.
“You ask Manchester City what they want to win this year and it’s probably the Champions League.
“But they are a super side with a super manager, and so are we, so it will be close.”