Liverpool - Chelsea 0-1: Michael Owen's "devious" Liverpool M. Salah and Sadio Mane theory after Chelsea defeat

  The Egyptian forward came off earlier than he ever had with the Reds in a home Premier League start against the Blues

Jurgen Klopp has defended his decision-making after he removed Mohamed Salah for Diogo Jota in the 62nd-minute of a 1-0 home loss to Chelsea on Thursday - a substitution that led the forward to shake his head as he walked off the pitch.

Klopp said he makes the "decisions that I think are right in the moment", though he admitted he could have removed either Sadio Mane or Roberto Firmino instead of the Egyptian forward.

With the defeat, Liverpool have now lost five straight matches at Anfield for the first time in their history. They've scored just once across those games.

Salah and Mane's form has caused concern for Liverpool in recent Premier League matches, but Reds legend Owen believes he knows why they are struggling to find the back of the net

Michael Owen has spoken of his ‘devious’ theory that Sadio Mane is seeking to limit Mohamed Salah ’s opportunities to score.

It comes after Liverpool suffered their fifth successive Premier League defeat on Thursday as Chelsea triumphed at Anfield.  

Andy Robertson has told his Liverpool team-mates that they cannot afford to let their heads drop when they go behind in games.

The Reds lost for a fifth successive game at Anfield as Chelsea secured a 1-0 victory.

Mason Mount's first-half strike proved to be the difference with the hosts failing to have a shot on target until late in the game.

Jurgen Klopp's side now face an uphill battle to qualify for the Champions League.

Injuries have hampered the defence of their title and Robertson insists they "can't rely on the past" as he lamented their recent form.

"For us to get beaten on the counter-attack is not good enough.

"Five home games without a win, that is nowhere near good enough.

"Nothing is going to help the fans at home and it is simply not good enough because games are running out for what we want.

"Too many heads are going down when we go 1-0 down, we cant do that. Football is about taking knocks.

"We can't rely on the past. Last season is over with, it is done. We have nowhere near been good enough to what a Liverpool team should be. We are dropping further and it is not good enough.

The Senegal forward was challenged by Antonio Rudiger in the area but stayed on his feet rather than trying to win a spot-kick

Former Liverpool striker Michael Owen believes Sadio Mane didn’t go down for a penalty in Liverpool’s defeat to Chelsea on Thursday because he didn’t want Mohamed Salah to score from the spot.

Mane stayed on his feet after a challenge from Antonio Rudiger, with Liverpool eventually suffering a fifth consecutive league defeat at Anfield.

But, rather than an honest piece of play from a forward trying to score a goal, Owen suggested Mane was sabotaging his long-term team-mate’s hunt for the Golden Boot.

Are Salah and Mane rivals for the Golden Boot?

Salah is the Premier League’s current top scorer despite Liverpool’s struggles. He has 17 goals to his name, two more than Bruno Fernandes in second place. Mane, with seven, is 20th on the list.

Salah won the Golden Boot outright in 2017-18, before he and Mane shared the award with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang the following season.

Owen continued: “I just wonder, I might be far off the mark, whether if he was dancing around a player thinking he could get a shot off, if he is thinking ‘this is my opportunity to score’.

“The competitive nature between him and Mo Salah. It might be a wild theory, but we’ve seen them not passing to each other when one is in a perfectly better position than the other, and it just makes me wonder.

“We are talking about selfishness and [being] a little bit disgruntled, we’ve seen Salah shaking his head [when substituted], we know how much they want to win the Golden Boot, I just think a couple times there I’ve seen Sadio Mane go down there.

“Two games on the spin when the opportunity is there… it just made me think a little bit.”

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