In today’s Liverpool Roundup, we take a look at the latest Reds news doing the rounds. Virgil van Djik insists “there is no reason to panic” after the Napoli defeat, Sadio Mane is in talks over a new bumper contract, and Mason Mount is expected to be fit for the Sunday showdown against Chelsea.
‘No reason to panic’, says Van Dijk
Report: As reported by the Liverpool Echo, star centre-back van Dijk said after the Napoli defeat: “It didn’t feel like a wake-up call, I think both sides were focused fully on the game. It felt like it was going to be a draw, and then the penalty changed everything in the game. It shouldn’t be a wake-up call – we have been performing since the start of the season outstanding, and so there is no reason to panic.
“And in the game as well, we played well, we put them under pressure, we created opportunities on the break. So there were a lot of positive things about tonight, the only thing not positive was the result.”
Verdict: Van Dijk is correct – there is no need to panic. Liverpool are currently top of the Premier League, bagging 15 goals, conceding just four and brushing aside all five of their opponents so far. After all, Liverpool did lose to Napoli in the group stages last Champions League, but still managed to win the entire competition.
The Reds have now put behind them arguably their biggest test in the group stages with the away trip to Naples. Jurgen Klopp’s men will now face Napoli at Anfield, and should make relatively light work of both Genk (Belgian champions) and Red Bull Salzburg (Austrian champions) home and away. Truthfully, Liverpool fans should not be concerned, at all.
Mane in contract talks
Report: According to La Gazzetta dello Sport journalist Nicolo Schira, superstar forward Mane is in talks to sign a new contract until 2025, with the club offering him €13M a year. The deal would keep the ex-Southampton man at Liverpool until he is 33.
Verdict: It will be music to the ears of Liverpool fans hearing that the club are looking to secure his services for the foreseeable future. The Senegalese international has been one of Europe’s best talents over the last few years, winning the Premier League Golden Boot last season with his 22 goals, and scoring 14 goals in the last two Champions League campaigns as the Reds reached consecutive finals. In this season alone, Mane has scored four league goals in five games, therefore putting in an early shout for another Golden Boot.
Mane is surely one of the world’s best left-sided wingers right now, and signing him up for the years to come would be fantastic business.
Mount could be fit to face Liverpool
Report: Chelsea boss Frank Lampard may be able to call upon Mason Mount for the Sunday fixture against Liverpool after an injury scare in the Champions League. As reported by The Athletic, an x-ray revealed there was no ligament damage following the challenge from Francis Coquelin, whilst the Express states that Mount is receiving ‘intensive treatment’ in a bid to get him fit for the weekend.
Verdict: The news won’t be welcomed by Liverpool fans. The 20-year-old has been one of the Premier League’s brightest talents this season, scoring three goals in the five games and averaging a performance rating of 7.82, as per WhoScored.
After Klopp endured his first loss since May 1 in midweek, Lampard will desperately be hoping Mount is fit for the clash against Liverpool. He’s already established himself as an important player within the team and embodies the manager’s ethos of bedding in young players – Tammy Abraham and Fikayo Tomori have also featured heavily this season with a combined seven top flight outings.
At the same time, Liverpool’s defeat to Napoli takes the wind out of the Reds’ sails slightly and gives Chelsea perhaps a better opportunity of getting all three points.