They say you can tell the character of a man by how he acts when the chips are down. When things aren’t going his way, does he complain or does he knuckle down and get on with his work? In the case of Mario Ballotelli it was complain, complain complain. After he signed for Nice in France he showed his true character, belittling Liverpool Football Club, the fans, the manager and the owners. Does he have a right to feel aggrieved, maybe. Should he be airing his dirty laundry in public? Most definitely not. He should have followed the example of Mamadou Sakho.
As we all know Sakho was sent home early from the pre season tour of America last summer after his behaviour was deemed less than professional by manager Jürgen Klopp. This led to fears amongst fans that Sakho’s days at Liverpool were numbered, especially when he refused to leave the club either on loan or on a permanent deal before the summers transfer window slammed shut.
His actions for me since then have been nothing more than admirable. He could have come out in the press and criticised Klopp for his treatment but instead he has kept his head down and has tried to work his way back in to the managers good books.
Sakho is the type of defender that inspires confidence in all those around him. Since his arrival from PSG, he has improved the Liverpool defence no ends. He has become a cult hero among the Liverpool fans for his footballing skills as well as his off field professionalism – well up until this summer that is. Klopp seems to be working on the three strike rule with his players and Sakho fell foul of that rule with his disruptive behaviour in America.
With Liverpool yet to keep a clean sheet this season in the league (shipping three at Arsenal, two at Burnley, one at Spurs, Leicester and Chelsea) Sakho at least deserves his chance to show Klopp that as disruptive as he is off the field on it he’s a leader, a player who when the chips are down will knuckle down and do all he can to motivate the team and push them forward.
If Sakho’s time at Liverpool is over then Klopp should just put him out of his misery and sell him on. The whole Sakho isn’t fit enough to play line will only placate Reds fans for so long. Yes Dejan Lovren and Joël Matip partnership is doing okish at the minute for Liverpool, I hope to see what Sakho and Matip can do over five or ten games this season. If Klopp does get rid of Sakho I hope he has a back up plan other then Lucas Leiva in defence lines up.
Written by @TheMoanyOne