A former Arsenal and Liverpool winger, Jermaine Pennant, has criticized manager, Jurgen Klopp, for substituting forward, Mohamed Salah, during the Reds’ 1-0 defeat against Chelsea in the Premier League on Thursday night.
Pennant described Klopp’s decision to take off Salah, who can produce magic as ‘silly’.
Recall that Klopp made a surprise decision to replace the Egyptian international with Diogo Jota after just 62 minutes during the match at Anfield.
Salah was clearly sad with Klopp’s decision as the 28-year-old shook his head on Liverpool’s bench.
“I am concerned that you are bringing him [Salah] off. You do not bring off a player of that stature,” Pennant told Stadium Astro.
“Not because he is bigger than the club, but because of what he can do on the pitch. He can produce magic. We have seen that every season that he’s played for Liverpool.
“He can be quiet for 80 minutes and bring out one piece of magic when they need it. In a game like this, you should always have Salah on the pitch.
“Bringing on Jota, great substitution. If they had had Firmino, Jota, Mane and Salah on the pitch, they would have put Chelsea on the back foot even more.
“Taking him off, I was baffled. You should always keep Salah on the pitch. You can’t bite your nose to spite your face.
“Taking him off was silly. If he was on the pitch, who knows what would have happened? I think Klopp needs to be more reasonable than that. I think it was a silly decision.”
Meanwhile, Klopp had said that he substituted Salah because he had concerns the player suffered fatigue during Liverpool’s defeat to Chelsea.
Klopp said, “I just brought on flesh legs. Mo [Salah] looked like today, it’s not very often… he suffered a bit. He played a lot of games.”