Mohamed Salah earns day off to prepare for Manchester United v Liverpool
By Richard Cooke
Last Updated: 07/03/18 9:00am
Mohamed Salah is being excused from training after coming on as a late substitute in Liverpool's 0-0 draw with Porto in the Champions League.
With Liverpool 5-0 up on aggregate from the first leg and cruising towards the quarter-finals, it was a surprise to some that the Egypt international was used for the last 20 minutes on Tuesday with the trip to Manchester United, live on Sky Sports, just four days away.
But Jurgen Klopp insists it was not a risk, saying: "Everyone thinks about injuries but that can happen all the time.
"Now we thought we give him, if possible, the last 20. If it is 15, he trains again on Wednesday. I told him if he really runs a lot, he does not have to train so I thought he was quite lively."
Klopp made five changes for the match but played two of his front three in Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane for 62 and 74 minutes respectively.
Of the other changes, Klopp said: "(Andrew) Robertson had an issue but not big. It was not about rotation, only about the next line-up.
"It was not too intense for Sadio, even though he was lively. It was very important for Adam (Lallana), getting used to the rhythm, and for Ingsy (Danny Ings) a few minutes.
"Joe Gomez playing after a few weeks was important. Now we can prepare for the Manchester game and I am looking forward to it."
United have an extra day to get ready for the match at Old Trafford on Saturday, having beaten Crystal Palace 3-2 on Monday night.
They do have their Champions League last-16 second leg against Sevilla to contend with next Tuesday, but Klopp does not think that will be an advantage to Liverpool.
"Manchester United are very experienced and obviously very fit," he said. "We saw (against Crystal Palace) they can score late, so I don't think they are too worried about playing on Saturday and then on Tuesday.
"We didn't think for a second when we played Newcastle that we had to play on Tuesday again. That's what our life is - do what we have to do and after that, start thinking about the next step, so no I don't think it is an advantage, to be honest."
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