What Roberto Firmino did for Sadio Mane's goal vs Stoke

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Jurgen Klopp sprung a surprise on Saturday when he left both Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino out of his starting line-up for the clash against Chelsea.

It was even more surprising when he waited until the 88th-minute to bring on Mane, leaving Firmino as an unused substitute.

And the Liverpool boss shuffled the pack once again for Liverpool’s trip to Stoke on Wednesday.

While Mane and Firmino were brought back into the starting XI, Philippe Coutinho and Mohamed Salah dropped to the bench.

It was a very brave call.

However, within 18 minutes, it was looking like a very good decision.

After Joe Gomez had kept the ball in on the right wing, Dominic Solanke - on his full debut - did very well to the ball alive.

It then fell to Sadio Mane, who dinked the ball over the onrushing Lee Grant. However, the Stoke goalkeeper got a big hand on it meaning the ball trickled over the line.


As the ball bobbled towards the goal, Firmino ran towards the ball and could have easily tapped the ball home. However, he decided to leave it and allow Mane to have the goal.


Watch: What Firmino did for Mane's goal

Take a look:

Liverpool fans react

And it was something that Liverpool fans noticed - and loved! Check out the reaction:

Klopp explains his selection

Before the game, Klopp explained why he had left both Coutinho and Salah on the bench for what looked to be a very tough fixture.

“[The team is about] bringing the quality we have on the pitch and bringing freshness. In this period you still need to have intensity in your game and you can have intensity every three days if you make the change, and that’s why we do it," he said.

Stoke City v Liverpool - Premier League

“I’m really happy about the line-up, to be honest. I hope we can perform, of course, but I show the faith and the boys show their quality – that would be cool.”

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Stoke City
Premier League
Roberto Firmino

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