Aliou Cissé, the head coach of Senegal national team has blasted Liverpool manager, Jurgen Klopp for describing the Africa Cup of Nations [Afcon] as a little tournament.
The German tactician has been taken to the cleaners by many African football fans after he described the continent most prestigious tournament as a little tournament in his post-match conference after Liverpool’s 4-0 win over Arsenal.
“I’ve heard that so often that there’s no international break until March. In January, there’s a little tournament in Africa, I just want to say, and I think Asia is playing games, too – South America as well, great, can’t wait,” Klopp said when asked if he was “relieved” that they had got through a busy period with “no international break until March.
But according to Aliou Cissé, Klopp should be grateful to African players because without them he would have been still been tagged as a failure for always losing big finals.
He stressed that the former Dortmund gaffer wouldn’t be enjoying this fame without Sadio Mane, Mohammed Salah, and Joel Matip who gave him his first Champions League trophy.
“I manage Senegal and my players play for Klopp at Liverpool, I respect Liverpool, not Klopp who undermines African football events. He is where he is today because of African footballers," Cissé said as quoted by sportsration.com.
“Without them, he was losing every final until Salah, Mané, Matip came to his rescue to win the first-ever major European big final. Today he has the guts to call AFCON “A Small Tournament.
“AFCON has the same number of participants 24 like their UEFA Euro, who does he think he is? AFCON will have the same superstars that are currently helping him to shine at Liverpool. AFCON is of the same quality as Euros.
“I am glad Mané is still humble despite being under an arrogant man!” he added.