Wednesday 21 February 2018

Jurgen Klopp warns Christian Benteke, Mario Balotelli that it 'makes no sense' to stay at Reds

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp
Action Images via Reuters / Lee Smith
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp Action Images via Reuters / Lee Smith

Samuel Stevens

Jürgen Klopp has told his fringe players who refuse to leave that it “makes no sense” to sit on the bench following Liverpool’s third successive pre-season victory against Wigan Athletic.

The 49-year-old has already completed deals for Sadio Mane, for £30m from Southampton, Loris Karius, a £4.7m capture from Mainz, and the free transfer of Joel Matip from Schakle while Augsburg defender Ragnar Klavan is expected to join also.

After watching Liverpool ease to victory against Championship opposition at the DW Stadium, courtesy of goals from Danny Ings and Ben Woodburn, Klopp issued a warning to any members of his squad currently stalling on a move away from Anfield.

In a statement thought to have been aimed at Christian Benteke, Mario Balotelli and Lazar Markovic, the German said: “A few things will happen I am pretty sure. I don’t know exactly what but on both sides, it makes no sense to stay in the squad and be in the squad when you don’t have a real opportunity to play.

“When there’s no chance to play, it makes absolutely no sense. The players are young. We will not give on loan our very young players, absolutely no chance.

“We have a few players, maybe who want to leave us and I am pretty sure it will happen – and one or two more players will join us from other clubs. It’s a long time until the 31st of August and we have to work a little bit.”

Philippe Coutinho returned from injury for the trip to Wigan, hitting the woodwork twice in the first-half, before Matip narrowly missed a header from just six yards out.

The Reds had to wait until the 71st minute for a breakthrough, however, when Markovic’s cross was converted from close range by former Burnley forward Ings.

Woodburn, just 16-years-old, then continued his impressive pre-season campaign with a goal moments later ahead of the trip to face Huddersfield Town on Wednesday evening.

Independent News Service

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