OUT: Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp confirms Mo Salah will not play in crucial Barcelona fixture
For the second season running an injury to Mohamed Salah has struck a cruel blow to Liverpool's UEFA Champions League hopes as Jurgen Klopp confirms that the Egyptian will play no part in his side's semi-final with Barcelona.
Salah suffered a concussion in an aerial challenge with Newcastle goalkeeper Martin Dubravka on Saturday, after which he was treated on the pitch for around five minutes before being stretchered off, during his side's 3-2 win.
Word had filtered from Anfield on Sunday that last year's English Player of the Year may be declared fit for Barcelona's visit to Anfield on Tuesday, though Jurgen Klopp dashed those hopes at Monday afternoon's press conference. The German also confirmed that Roberto Firmino is also unavailable.
Klopp: "Two of the world's best strikers are not available tomorrow night and we have to score 4 goals to go through - that doesn't make life easier."— James Pearce (@JamesPearceEcho) May 6, 2019
"He feels OK, but it is not good enough from a medical point of view," Klopp said of Salah, scorer of 22 Premier League goals this season.
"That’s all. He’s desperate, everything, but we cannot do it."
Salah has once again been instrumental to Liverpool's Champions League campaign and his head injury comes just less than a year removed from the now infamous shoulder injury he suffered at the hands of Sergio Ramos in last season's Champions League Final against Real Madrid, which forced him from the field in the first-half and put his participation with Egypt in last summer's World Cup in doubt.
Klopp on what he needs to change from the first leg: "The result!"— James Pearce (@JamesPearceEcho) May 6, 2019
Liverpool face a Herculean task in the semi-final second leg to overcome a 3-0 deficit to Barcelona but Klopp says his approach to the fixture remains the same despite the disadvantage on the scoreboard.
"The approach? We try to win the game. That makes sense," he said.Also on rt.com 'He's okay. He just can't remember who I am!' Dejan Lovren gives injury update on 'monster' Mo Salah
"The situation is not what you want to have. You can’t play against Barcelona and tell the world, ‘watch this.’ We try to win the game. If at a specific moment they give us an opportunity to go to the next round we try to do it.
"Together with our supporters it’s been a long season. There’s a little chance to make it longer but these are the last two home games of an incredible season."
It isn't all bad news for Liverpool fans however, as Klopp confirmed that Salah should be available for Liverpool's title decider with Wolves on Sunday.