(Reuters) – Sadio Mane says he will probably be watched more carefully by Sunday’s referee because of Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola’s “diving” comments but the Liverpool forward has no intention of changing the way he plays.
Guardiola said last weekend that Mane dived sometimes, after the forward was booked in the first half against Aston Villa for simulation, though the City boss has since walked back his comments.
Leaders Liverpool host champions City in a Premier League showdown on Sunday and Sane said the timing of Guardiola’s accusation was no coincidence.
“I think it’s a bit clever from him to get the attention of the referee but I will just play my football like I’m always doing,” Mane told British media.
The Senegal forward added that the comments mattered little to him.
“I don’t pay attention to what he’s saying because it’s part of football,” he added. “If the ‘dive’ will give me a penalty then I will do it. Why not? But what coach Juergen (Klopp) said is correct. I do not dive.”
(Reporting by Hardik Vyas in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Rutherford)