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Liverpool ace Mane expected to be fit for start of season despite knee injury

Date Posted,July 11, 2017

Liverpool star Sadio Mane will not travel with the first-team squad for the Premier League Asia Trophy in Hong Kong but is still expected to be fit for the start of the season.

Mane was hoping to make his Reds comeback in the pre-season tournament in the Far East but will stay behind in England as he looks to ensure he is 100 per cent ready for the opening Premier League game against Watford on August 12.

The Senegal international was forced to miss the end of last season after he sustained a knee injury during the Merseyside derby win over Everton at Anfield and was forced to undergo surgery.

But Mane has been working hard at the club’s Melwood training centre throughout the summer and is determined to declare his fitness for the start of the season.

Sadio Mane greets Adam Lallana on his return to training (Image: Liverpool FC)

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp is refusing to take any chances over his long-term fitness and feels it will be more beneficial for the 25-year-old to remain in England and continue his rehabilitation programme.

Klopp, speaking to Liverpoolfc.com, said: “He is really, really good. He is close; he is closing on coming back to team training.

“In this moment, we think it will be when we are in Asia, so then it makes no sense to take him to Asia because he needs to then do the first steps in kind of team training.

“We will see how we can do it; maybe [some of] the U23s will be here, so when he can start this [training] then we can use this opportunity, but we have to wait.

Jurgen Klopp is refusing to take any chances over Sadio Mane’s long-term fitness (Image: Liverpool FC)

“On Tuesday morning he was part of the running, so he is first-team training if you want and that looked really good. I think he is getting better, but it is how it is after a long time – you need to build a little bit of muscle again in the quad and thigh, which is important.

“There is no risk with him because he is a naturally fit boy and in the moment when he can start to be a real part of the sessions, he will then immediately be fit again.

“We have not all the time in the world, but we have time and we will use it.”

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