English Premier League franchise were dealt a huge, long-term blow earlier today which could not only affect the remainder of their current campaign but also for seasons to come.
Earlier in the season before the match against Manchester United, French international and star Liverpool defender Mamadou Sakho was asked to submit a sample for a drug test and last week it was revealed evidence of a fat-burning substance that is on the banned list by UEFA.
The defender was given up until the 26th April to respond to the allegations and he has now reportedly decided not to challenge the results of the drug test.
The club have however not released and official statement and have insisted that it was a private matter at the moment. However, the defender will not be eligible to play for the club till the investigation from the UEFA is still undergoing.
This leaves Sakho with almost no chance of playing for Liverpool for the rest of the season and if the issue is not resolved quickly, the 26-year old may face a lengthy ban from the game.
Klopp’s Liverpool have already left for the first leg of the semi-final of the Europa League this season against Villarreal and Sakho did not make the trip to Spain.
The fact that Sakho has accepted his fate and has not challenged the A-sample to be cross checked with another sample shows that the French star does not want to make this a huge story and this gesture will see him slapped with a ban sooner than he would have if he challenged UEFA’s first decision.
This is not the first time that a situation like this has hit a professional footballer.
Kolo Toure, currently a Liverpool player was banned for six months in 2011 after he admitted to taking his wife’s diet pills, medication that was not allowed by the UEFA regulations for players.
However, Toure pleaded innocent and of not knowing the list of banned substances and got away with a 6-month ban.
Sakho, on the other hand, is not looking to defend himself and has accepted the inquisition into him from the UEFA.
With nothing changing drastically in the next few days, Sakho will be looking at up to a 2-year ban and will miss the EURO’s in his home country later this year.
Liverpool will now be without the fan favorite for the rest of the season and will have to find a makeshift replacement for the big Frenchman if they want to go all the way in the Europa league.