Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has confirmed that Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane have been given permission to fly to an awards ceremony in Africa, just 24 hours before the FA Cup third-round tie against Everton.
The pair face a 9,000-mile round trip this week to attend the Confederation of African Football awards bash in Accra, which takes place on Thursday evening.
Salah and Mane are on the three-man shortlist for the African Player of the Year gong, along with Borussia Dortmund striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, and they have been given the green light to attend.
Klopp insists that Liverpool can handle the logistical element of the trip, with a quick turnaround required if either player is to feature at Anfield on Friday night.
“We have everything organised,” he told reporters. “We have two of the three best African players in our squad. We have to show them respect. If it had been a matchday, they wouldn’t have asked. We sleep in a hotel, they sleep in a plane. That is all the difference.
“If Mo is not fit, it will not be from [travelling]. For our side, it is just a sign of respect I had Aubameyang [at Dortmund] and there is nothing more important than to go there.”
Salah has been in inspired form for Liverpool since arriving from Roma in the summer, bagging 17 top-flight goals and five more in the Champions League, while Mane has eight goals in 18 outings overall this term.