Jurgen Klopp must avoid Robert Lewandowski repeat and resolve burning Liverpool issue

Sadio Mane is in brilliant form and Liverpool cannot afford to lose him this summer amid Bayern Munich and Barcelona links.

Jurgen Klopp surely must have been incandescent with rage if he heard about the latest Liverpool rumour.

The timing of such gossip hasn’t exactly been ideal. Even if it's nothing but tittle-tattle, the Reds boss will want no distractions as his side chase an unprecedented quadruple.

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The only focus should be on keeping the pressure on Manchester City in the Premier League title race, the FA Cup final and the Champions League final.

Players' futures beyond this campaign are irrelevant. They can be dealt with after 28 May no matter who you are.

The emphasis on potentially creating history is imperative.

Summer transfer links

In truth, talk of Sadio Mane being a supposed summer target for Bayern Munich and Barcelona couldn't have come at a worse point.

The Senegal international is currently in the best form of his Anfield career. Reinvented as a centre-forward, he's marched out of Mo Salah's shadow and transformed himself arguably into Liverpool's talisman.

Luckily for Klopp, Mane does not seem at all bothered about the speculation that fills up the column inches.

Mane made himself the match-winner in the 2-1 win at Aston Villa, which moved the Reds back level on points with Manchester City ahead of their trip to Wolves.

It was his 22nd goal of the campaign - and perhaps the most important.

A difficult second-half header was put away nonchalantly and ensured Liverpool battled from behind to earn three precious points.

Klopp displayed his full appreciation to Mane at the full-time whistle by dishing out a prolonged famous bear hug of his.

Diaz rapport

When Luis Diaz arrived at Anfield in January, some doubted where Mane would fit in.

Salah was the chief tormentor, running amok against every opposition he faced.

Diogo Jota, meanwhile, was in rampant goalscoring mood and his link-up play was also crucial

Yet the rapport Diaz and Mane have struck up is a fundamental reason why Liverpool's hunt for four trophies goes on.

Diaz’s cross wasn’t perfect for Mane’s latest goal, but the narrow corridor it was thread through was right on the money.

It's Jota who's been pushed down the pecking order and will likely find himself on the bench for this Saturday's FA Cup final against Chelsea.

To lose Mane is now unthinkable. Out of contract in the summer of 2023, nerves among Kopites are beginning to intensify given the rumours swirling.

Avoiding a repeat

Klopp knows a thing or two about losing players to Bayern.

When Borussia Dortmund manager, Robert Lewandowski made that switch, as well as Mario Gotze.

Lewandowski, of course, has taken his game up manifold levels at the Bundesliga giants. He’s a key reason behind them winning a staggering eight successive German titles and the Champions League.

The difference between Liverpool and Dortmund, though, is that their gravitas and grandeur on the European stage is significantly bigger.

It should be out of the question that Bayern are able to poach any of the Reds’ stars.

Erling Haaland will be joining Manchester City in the summer. By Klopp's own admission, it's unfortunate for Liverpool's silverware aspirations in future seasons.

The Reds have already been dealt one setback and next season hasn't even begun.

They can't afford another by losing Mane.