Jurgen Klopp says moving AFCON to January will make clubs think twice about signing African stars

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Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp says moving Africa Cup of Nations back to January-February slot will make clubs think twice about signing African stars

  • The African Cup of Nations has been moved back to January for next year
  • Jurgen Klopp has warned that the decision could cost African players moves 
  • He said: ‘Before the season you know that you won’t have them for four weeks’ 

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has warned that the decision to move the African Cup of Nations back to a January slot will have an impact on the club’s transfer policy.

The AFCON will take place next winter in the middle of the Premier League season, even though the last one took place in the summer.

With Liverpool set to lose players like Sadio Mane, Mo Salah and Naby Keita for up to six weeks, Klopp warned that the move may stop him buying African players in the future.

Jurgen Klopp has warned that decision to move AFCON to January won't help African players

Jurgen Klopp has warned that decision to move AFCON to January won’t help African players

He said: ‘I couldn’t respect the African Cup of Nations more than I do because I like the competition.

‘But it is an obvious problem that you play a tournament in the middle of the season, The African Cup of Nations going back to January is, for us, a catastrophe.

‘It doesn’t help African players. We will not sell Sadio, Mo or Naby just because they have a tournament in January and February – of course not – but if you have to make a decision about bringing in a player it is a massive one because before the season you know for four weeks you don’t have them.

‘That’s a normal process and as a club you have to think about these things. It doesn’t help the players, for sure. But these decisions are made without asking the players, without asking the managers, without asking anyone. It is just a decision.’

Liverpool will lose Mo Salah (L) and Sadio Mane (R) for up to six weeks to AFCON next season

Liverpool will lose Mo Salah (L) and Sadio Mane (R) for up to six weeks to AFCON next season

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