Liverpool must make Coutinho, Salah want to stay at Anfield - Jurgen Klopp
SEVILLE -- Jurgen Klopp insisted he is not worried about Liverpool stars Philippe Coutinho and Mo Salah being linked with Barcelona and Real Madrid, but admitted that the club has to keep its best players happy if they are to bring success to Anfield.
Liverpool face Sevilla in Spain on Tuesday aiming to secure qualification for the Champions League knockout stages with Coutinho and Salah both seeing their names associated with Barca and Real in recent days.
Coutinho remains a Barcelona target, despite failing to complete a move to the Nou Camp this summer, while former Egypt forward Mido has been quoted in the Spanish media this week, claiming that his fellow countryman Salah "will soon go to Real Madrid."
Klopp, however, insists that he has no concerns about his players being tempted away this season.
"It's all good," Klopp said in Seville. "In Spain, you are used to it. Barcelona, Real Madrid -- nobody is really interested.
"I am not worried about it, but the way for us to be successful is to have good players in the team. It's our job to make sure that players want to stay here.
"If they want to go somewhere else they can have different reasons, but I'm happy about having these players together and hopefully they can perform tomorrow."
Coutinho's situation at Liverpool remains a subject of discussion, with the Brazilian forward making clear his desire to leave for Barcelona during the summer.
When asked about Coutinho's commitment to Liverpool amid the Barcelona speculation, Klopp said that he was unconcerned about the player's focus and desire.
"We are completely cool and Phil is 100 percent at Liverpool," Klopp said. "After all the talk of the summer, it is really positive.
"When the market closed, we were all professionals."
Liverpool face Sevilla having lost 1-0 on each of their last three visits to Spain. The Spanish outfit, meanwhile, have won six of their last eight European home games and also defeated Liverpool in the 2016 Europa League final in Basel.
With the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan Stadium boasting a reputation as one of the most hostile and atmospheric in Europe, Klopp insists he is relishing the opportunity to play in the stadium rather fear it.
"This is Sevilla in Sevilla, a very good team, this is the Champions League," Klopp said. "I played twice here, with Mainz and Dortmund, but the atmosphere depends on the performance.
"It is always good here, but it depends on the performance of the away team and how good it is. That's how it is.
"They all try when they come to Anfield, same when they came to Dortmund, it is fantastic, but we are not here to enjoy the atmosphere. We are here to get a result.
"It is no excuse that we are not at home. I am ready to enjoy the atmosphere as long as it is here."
Mark Ogden is a senior football writer for ESPN FC. Follow him @MarkOgden_