Mamadou Sakho Issues Apology After Derby Walkout

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Liverpool defender Mamadou Sakho was pictured leaving Anfield before the Merseyside Derby, with the Frenchman releasing a grovelling apology post-match.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, September 21, 2013: Liverpool's Mamadou Sakho in action against Southampton during the Premiership match at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

In the build-up to Saturday’s 1-1 Merseyside Derby draw at home to rivals Everton, Liverpool centre-back Mamadou Sakho drew criticism after having been pictured leaving Anfield before kick-off.

Presumably a reaction to being dropped in favour of starting defenders Dejan Lovren and Martin Skrtel, the 24-year-old reportedly left the stadium in full club suit, whilst his teammates continued their preparations.

https://twitter.com/RS51DHU/status/515808675303555072

Veteran centre-back Kolo Toure took Sakho’s place on the substitutes’ bench.

Liverpool went on to dominate the majority of proceedings, with Everton counterpart Phil Jagielka compounding Sakho’s misery with a late, long-range equaliser.

Clearly acknowledging his wrongdoing, Sakho issued an apology via his Twitter account after the game.

The Frenchman apologised “to the club, the supporters and every person who felt offended,” claiming he preferred to watch the game alone—a “bad choice.”

Whilst this should draw a line under Sakho’s mistake, this highlights an alarming treatment of the centre-back by Reds manager Brendan Rodgers since an £18 million move from PSG last summer.

Having left the French champions for Merseyside in search of regular game time, Sakho has continually found himself marginalised under Rodgers.

Sakho is widely regarded as Liverpool’s most talented centre-back, with a dominant, front-footed style perfectly complementing Rodgers’ style of play.

However, the Frenchman has made just 21 league appearances for Liverpool since his move—far from a regular run for the young defender.

Being dropped in favour of old hand Toure will have been a kick in the teeth; alarm bells ring on Merseyside.

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