GLASGOW, SCOTLAND - Wednesday, October 12, 2022: Liverpool's Mohamed Salah celebrates after scoring the fourth goal during the UEFA Champions League Group A matchday 4 game between Glasgow Rangers FC and Liverpool FC at Ibrox Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Jurgen Klopp downplays Mo Salah as striker despite 6-minute hat-trick

Jurgen Klopp has seemingly dismissed claims Mohamed Salah should start as a central striker following his hat-trick against Rangers.

Salah came off the bench in Wednesday’s clash with Rangers to score the fastest-ever Champions League hat-trick, netting three times in six minutes and 12 seconds.

The No. 11 did so having taken over from Darwin Nunez as the centre-forward in Klopp’s 4-4-2, which has prompted calls from supporters to deploy him in this role moving forward.

However, in his press conference ahead of the clash with Man City at Anfield, the manager insisted that he doesn’t believe it “had too much to do with the position.”

“In this game it was the change we made. Mo came on, Harvey stayed on the pitch and we didn’t change system,” Klopp said.

2K69CMB Liverpool's Mohamed Salah celebrates scoring their side's fifth goal of the game during the UEFA Champions League Group A match at the Ibrox Stadium, Glasgow. Picture date: Wednesday October 12, 2022.

“He can play that position, no doubt about that, but he can play the wider position as well.

“In moments when he finished the situations off, he was more central, that makes sense. But it was still his space, especially for two goals.

“When he set up the goal for Harvey, which Diogo might have finished off already, then he was more flexible.

“That’s the flexibility we need in all offensive moments.

“It’s not so different. Whichever system we play, for finishing you need to be in and around the box, that’s how it is. He was there, definitely.

“I don’t think it had too much to do with the position. There were situations when we were in possession where Mo went to the right side, to his right wing.

“It’s completely normal. You need to be flexible, to need to fill up the spaces, you need to force the defensive players to react on different scenarios.

“It’s quite comfortable when you are always in the same space as an attacker, then the defender knows, ‘OK, when the ball is coming I’ll be there’.

“But if we are more flexible, it makes it immediately more difficult.

“That was really good in these moments, but I think two of the goals he scored were from his typical position.

“So, nothing special.”