Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp says they have done the right thing with their handling of Mamadou Sakho after his failed drugs test.
The France international did not play against Newcastle at the weekend and did not travel to Villarreal for their Europa League semi-final second leg after the club were alerted by Uefa to an alleged doping violation.
Klopp, the club’s owners Fenway Sports Group and the player himself all decided it was best he did not feature for the team while the issue is still ongoing — which has effectively ended his season.
It is understood the 26-year-old opted not to request his B sample be tested ahead of Tuesday’s deadline after his initial test — carried out last month after the Europa League tie at Manchester United — revealed traces of a fat-burning substance.
It is believed Sakho has accepted the breach and although the club have refused to comment on his current situation, as his response and subsequent course of action is confidential, as it pertains to the individual himself and not the club, Klopp said he believes they have acted appropriately.
“It is not that we could do anything or we could not force anything, we have to wait,” said Klopp.
“Until now we did what we thought was right, there is nothing else to say.”
There is an outside chance Sakho could escape with a severe reprimand if there are extenuating circumstances but team-mate Kolo Toure was banned for six months while at Manchester City in February 2011 for a doping violation after taking ‘water tablets’ on the recommendation of his wife and it appears Sakho is more likely to incur a similar suspension.
Liverpool can ill-afford to lose players for this crucial part of the season after midfielders Jordan Henderson and Emre Can, and forward Divock Origi all had their campaigns prematurely ended by injuries in the last couple of weeks.
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