Jordan Henderson credited Jurgen Klopp with fostering the "fantastic" mentality at Liverpool that enabled them to come from behind and beat Tottenham 2-1 at Anfield.

Harry Kane scored inside 47 seconds to put the visitors ahead against the league leaders, who struggled to find a way through a determined Spurs defence until Henderson equalised in the 52nd minute.

Sadio Mane drew a foul in the box from Serge Aurier 15 minutes from time and Mohamed Salah scored from the penalty spot to earn the Reds a ninth win in 10 Premier League games this season.

Asked what drives Liverpool to bounce back from difficult situations, Henderson gave a one-word response, telling Sky Sports: "Mentality.

"That's grown over the last few years. The gaffer has changed that so much in us and the mentality's fantastic throughout the squad.

"Whenever we face adversity we bounce back and we need to carry that right through the season because it's not going to go all our own way; it's going to be difficult at times like it was today.

"But it's about going through that, pushing each other and always believing."

Mane admitted he spotted the opportunity to win a penalty and stepped into Aurier's path to win it.

The Senegal international also expressed his desire to dethrone Manchester City and claim the Premier League title.

Describing his emotions at 1-0 down against Spurs, Mane said: "I was thinking, 'We're going to come back.' We try to push each other as a team, create chances and in the end we scored two goals and deserved to win tonight.

"To be honest I thought it was a clear penalty. I knew he [Aurier] was going to go for the ball so I tried to put my legs in between, so unlucky for him, lucky for me.

"Every win is a big moment and it's big for us because of what we need and what we're looking for. I know it's early to speak about but what's wrong? We want to win it."

If games and seasons turn on moments, Son Heung-min's strike against the woodwork at Anfield might prove huge for both Tottenham and Liverpool.

From a tight angle early in the second half, Spurs forward Son went agonisingly close to handing the visitors a 2-0 lead.

Liverpool would have been deflated, Spurs elated. Yet come the final whistle, with that single-goal deficit overturned, it was the Reds chalking up another victory.

They remain bang on target for a first Premier League title, while Mauricio Pochettino's Tottenham lurk uncomfortably in mid-table.

Liverpool, then, are back to winning ways in the competition they yearn to capture most of all, chasing another streak of successes after their 17-match sequence came to a halt with the draw against Manchester United in their previous game.

As setbacks go, drawing at the home of your fiercest rivals is more molehill than mountain. But Liverpool would understandably have been disappointed with their display in the 1-1 draw at Old Trafford.

The Reds are winless in their past six Premier League visits to Old Trafford, despite last week facing the poorest United side in decades.

If toiling but getting the job done at home to Leicester City and then taking an eight-point lead into the international break felt significant, so too did seeing that advantage immediately cut to six by a Manchester City outfit determined to respond.

In recent title tilts, Liverpool have made a habit of seizing control, only to swiftly let their firm grasp of the situation slip.

The 2013-14 season saw Liverpool lead City with three games remaining. Brendan Rodgers' men, having won 11 matches in a row, then dropped five points across their next two and even made hard work of nine-man Newcastle United on the final day, falling two points and several goals short.

Last season, City lost three of four games in mid-December and dropped to third, seven points behind Liverpool, but beat the leaders in the first game of 2019 en route to winning 18 of their remaining 19 matches. Liverpool drew four of six games at one stage in that stretch, meanwhile, and were trailing again.

At Anfield, where they are still waiting for a first title of the Premier League era, and where they know pesky City have punished their every error in seasons past, these slumps can feel cataclysmic.

There may have been no disgrace in drawing at United, but a failure to beat Tottenham in Liverpool's final home game before welcoming City in early November really would have really piled on the pressure.

Desperate for a victory, this felt for 45 minutes like a day when fate was conspiring against Jurgen Klopp's side.

Moussa Sissoko, who missed a huge chance at Anfield last season and crucially handled within 30 seconds of the first whistle in the Champions League final, drove Spurs forward to prompt another early goal in this fixture, this time for Harry Kane after just 47 seconds.

Liverpool were gifted victory by Hugo Lloris in the corresponding fixture last season but found Paulo Gazzaniga, the deputy, improbably unbeatable before the break.

"Where's your European Cup," chanted the Kop early on, provoked by the Tottenham supporters, but only after a decisive five-minute second-half spell were Liverpool roared on in pursuit of the trophy they all really want.

Jordan Henderson - talismanic in the European final - lashed beyond Gazzaniga and celebrated in the fashion one might a title-defining effort, before Mohamed Salah thrashed in another penalty against Spurs to settle the contest with 15 minutes to play.

As against Leicester, the scoreline was unconvincing but here the performance was not. Liverpool's momentum is unchecked after that Old Trafford blip.

Tottenham, on the other hand, a threat on the counter but still so flimsy at the back, sit 11th and could not even play the role of spoilers as they had in a draw at Etihad Stadium in August.

They will scarcely be considered interested spectators when Liverpool and City face their next big Premier League tests, against one another, in a fortnight.

Mohamed Salah struck the winner as Premier League leaders Liverpool came from behind to clinch a 2-1 victory over Tottenham.

Harry Kane scored after 47 seconds at Anfield and Jurgen Klopp's men, for all their dominance of the ball, struggled to cope with Tottenham's fast breaks and the irrepressible Son Heung-min.

Son was instrumental in creating the opener for the in-form Kane, who has scored five goals in his last five games for club and country, and Liverpool found Paulo Gazzaniga at his best in the Spurs goal as they pressed hard for an equaliser.

That goal arrived courtesy of a Danny Rose error that let in Jordan Henderson to score, and Salah fired the winner from the penalty spot after Serge Aurier felled Sadio Mane in the box.

The result restored Liverpool's six-point lead over second-placed Manchester City, while mid-table Tottenham are without a league win in their last three attempts.

Moussa Sissoko launched Tottenham into an immediate attack, feeding Son Heung-min who turned inside Trent Alexander-Arnold and Jordan Henderson before crashing a deflected shot onto the post, and Kane was on hand to steer the rebound home with a diving header.

Christian Eriksen went agonisingly close to doubling Tottenham's lead, rolling a shot just wide after Dele Alli's cut-back as the visitors' counter-attacks wrought havoc.

But Liverpool began to dominate and were unfortunate not to equalise as Salah stung Gazzaniga's palms with a pair of powerful drives from the edge of the box and Virgil van Dijk's bullet header was tipped over the bar by the Argentina international.

Gazzaniga saved well from Roberto Firmino before releasing Son who smacked a shot onto the crossbar with Alisson beaten, but Liverpool drew level moments later.

Andy Robertson's high ball into the box was poorly dealt with by Danny Rose whose header played in Henderson, and the England midfielder sent a shot bouncing into the far left corner of the net.

Tottenham defended bravely as Liverpool chased a winner, but Mane was caught by Aurier with 15 minutes left and the referee pointed to the spot without hesitation.

Salah rattled a clinical spot-kick past Gazzaniga and the Reds shut the door thereafter, leaving Spurs with one point from their last three league games.

What does it mean? Spurs on the slide
Tottenham have dropped into the bottom half of the Premier League table after picking up just three wins from their first 10 games of the season, while Liverpool remain unbeaten and seemingly unstoppable at the top.

Son still shines in defeat
Tottenham's best moments all involved the fleet-footed Son, who tormented Dejan Lovren and almost doubled the visitors' lead early in the second half.

Rose wilts under pressure
Liverpool might not have found a way back into the game had Rose not presented Henderson with such a golden chance to equalise, and the Spurs full-back should have done better with his header.

What's next?
Liverpool return to Anfield on Wednesday evening when they face Arsenal in the EFL Cup, while Tottenham have a week to prepare for a trip to Goodison Park to face Everton on Sunday.

Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino made four changes from the side that beat Red Star Belgrade in midweek for Sunday's visit to Premier League leaders Liverpool.

Danny Rose, Toby Alderweireld, Christian Eriksen and Harry Winks were all recalled to the starting XI as the Spurs boss sought to mastermind a first league win since September 28.

Jan Vertonghen, Tanguy Ndombele and Ben Davies were dropped to the substitutes' bench, while Erik Lamela – who scored in the Champions League win over Red Star – missed out with injury.

"[Lamela] suffered a small problem with his thigh yesterday in training," Pochettino explained. "This morning, he was checked by the doctor and the decision was made that he couldn't be involved. We hope it's not a big issue."

Son Heung-min was making his 200th appearance for Spurs at Anfield, supporting Harry Kane in attack.

Jurgen Klopp, meanwhile, made three changes from the Liverpool side that beat Genk 4-1 in the Champions League, with Trent Alexander-Arnold, Jordan Henderson and Georginio Wijnaldum all returning.

James Milner, Naby Keita and two-goal hero Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain all dropped to the bench.

Harry Kane insists Tottenham can prove Virgil van Dijk and Liverpool are fallible when last season's Champions League finalists renew their rivalry on Sunday.

Kane will spearhead the attack at Anfield in his side's first shot at exacting a measure of revenge for June's 2-0 defeat in Madrid.

Reds defender Van Dijk had the striker's measure in that match and kept the England captain goalless in a Nations League win for Netherlands less than a week later.

But the star centre-back and his six fellow Ballon d'Or nominees do not intimidate Tottenham's talisman, even though they have won eight and drawn one of their nine Premier League games this season and are unbeaten in the top flight since January.

"Van Dijk is a great defender but he's not ­invincible and Liverpool are not invincible," said Kane, who battled back from an ankle injury to feature in the Champions League final.

"We just have to concentrate on ourselves. Any team can be beaten on any day and we just have to try to make sure we do that at Anfield.

"As a striker, it's not just ­one-v-one on the pitch; there's a lot that goes into it. Van Dijk is an amazing defender and he has had a fantastic couple of years at Liverpool.

"From my point of view, it's just about playing my game and making my movements, doing my runs and trying to get on the scoresheet, trying to get assists.

"At the end of the day it's a team game, so we all have to be on it with each other and that's the main aim."

Underwhelming for much of this season, Spurs gained a valuable morale boost with a 5-0 midweek win over Red Star Belgrade in the Champions League.

Premier League performances have been far less convincing, but manager Mauricio Pochettino remains enthused about visiting the undefeated leaders.

"For me, it is a joy to go there and the motivation is there is there to play in a stadium like Anfield – it is always amazing," Pochettino told Sky Sports.

"When you have the opportunity to play this kind of game, you are thankful because you never know if you are going to have the opportunity to play it again."

Kevin De Bruyne reminded Premier League leaders Liverpool that there is a long season ahead after his goal in a 3-0 win over Aston Villa helped Manchester City narrow the gap at the top of the table to three points.

Raheem Sterling gave City the lead at Etihad Stadium before De Bruyne sent a curling ball into the Villa box and it drifted past goalkeeper Tom Heaton via an apparent glancing touch from David Silva.

Ilkay Gundogan added a third to put the game beyond Villa, who De Bruyne admitted caused City plenty of problems in a more evenly balanced first 45 minutes.

"In the first half we had some difficulty, a lack of intensity, and the rhythm was not really there," De Bruyne told BT Sport.

"Gabi [Gabriel Jesus] had a couple of chances to put us in front and the second half started really well with Ras' goal. After that, we had a good performance.

"In the first half they had couple of counter-attacks and we didn't cope really well. But it's going to happen, we played on Tuesday and they had the whole week [to prepare] so they're a little bit fresher but, in the end, we deserved to win."

The victory came three weeks after City suffered a shock 2-0 defeat at home to Wolves, handing Liverpool an advantage in the title race.

The Reds can restore a six-point gap over the champions by beating Tottenham on Sunday but De Bruyne is unperturbed by such an advantage.

"It's a long competition," said the Belgium international.

"We answered really well after the international break, won three in a row, so let's keep it going."

Even the sending-off of Fernandinho three minutes from time did not faze De Bruyne, who backed City's squad to cope with a list of defensive absentees that already includes Aymeric Laporte and Oleksandr Zinchenko.

Asked about the prospect of Fernandinho's suspension, De Bruyne replied: "You guys say the same whatever is happening, whoever gets injured.

"It's part of the game. We have a lot of injuries, but we've been coping really well. It's not nice because you want everyone to be there, but it is what it is."

Liverpool's Champions League success has given Jurgen Klopp's side further confidence in their abilities, but the Reds still see plenty of room for improvement.

Klopp's men sit top of the Premier League heading into Sunday's encounter with Tottenham – their first meeting with Spurs since beating them 2-0 in the Champions League final in June.

With Liverpool's winning start to the season halted by a draw at Manchester United last weekend, Manchester City's 3-0 victory over Aston Villa on Saturday moved Pep Guardiola's side three points behind the league leaders.

Liverpool responded to their disappointing display at Old Trafford with a stylish 4-1 rout of Genk in the Champions League on Wednesday, however, and Klopp suggested the Reds' triumph in Europe last season has given them a stronger mentality.

"The next challenge will be difficult again but of course we know more about it," Klopp told Sky Sports.

"We all know how important that confidence is and the confidence it gives you when the things you do work out, so the boys have started the season with a different mindset, more convinced, maybe.

"I still think we have a lot of space in that department where we could be more convinced of ourselves, more natural."

Tottenham have endured a difficult start to the campaign, though they bounced back from three games without a win in all competitions with a 5-0 hammering of Red Star Belgrade on Tuesday. 

"I don't understand 100 per cent what happened but I saw now in the [Champions League] that was Spurs how they can be as well," Klopp said when asked about Tottenham's troubles.

"That is the team we need to prepare for, we cannot prepare for the team that struggled two or three weeks ago, we need to be tense in the game for sure because to play just a little bit against Tottenham will not be enough.

"They will want to strike back, we won the Champions League final.

"Against United we were not really ourselves, that's how it is. Against us they set up in a specific way. With Tottenham it's a home game so that makes a difference as well."

Teenage Real Madrid forward Rodrygo Goes has been included in Brazil's squad for the first time ahead of next month's friendlies with Argentina and South Korea.

The 18-year-old made his first competitive start for Madrid in Tuesday's 1-0 Champions League win against Galatasaray, having also made a couple of substitute appearances in LaLiga this season.

Rodrygo is joined in Tite's 23-man squad by fellow newcomer Douglas Luiz, who has performed well in the Premier League since joining Aston Villa from Manchester City in July.

There is no place for fellow Madrid players Vinicius Junior and Marcelo, while injured Paris Saint-Germain forward Neymar also misses out, but Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson returns to the squad after recovering from a calf injury.

Brazil take on South American rivals Argentina in Saudi Arabia in three weeks and then travel to Abu Dhabi for a friendly with South Korea.

The Copa America holders enter the match without a win in their past four outings - all friendlies - and Tite is looking for an improvement as preparations continue for next year's World Cup qualifiers.

"I was not satisfied with our performances and results," he said at a news conference on Friday.

"But we have played in three competitive competitions. In the first, we formatted the team. The second, we reached the quarter-finals of the World Cup. In the Copa America, we won the title.

"Now we are at a new stage of the preparations, preparing for the qualifiers."

Brazil squad in full:

Alisson (Liverpool), Daniel Fuzato (Roma), Ederson (Manchester City); Alex Sandro (Juventus), Danilo (Juventus), Eder Militao (Real Madrid), Emerson (Real Betis), Felipe (Atletico Madrid), Marquinhos (Paris Saint-Germain), Renan Lodi (Atletico Madrid), Thiago Silva (Paris Saint-Germain); Arthur (Barcelona), Casemiro (Real Madrid), Douglas Luiz (Aston Villa), Fabinho (Liverpool), Lucas Paqueta (AC Milan), Philippe Coutinho (Bayern Munich); David Neres (Ajax), Gabriel Jesus (Manchester City), Richarlison (Everton), Roberto Firmino (Liverpool), Rodrygo (Real Madrid), Willian (Chelsea).

Mauricio Pochettino hopes that a team meal this week will stand Tottenham in good stead for the long term.

Tottenham's players invited Pochettino and his coaching staff to a social event in London on Thursday, three days ahead of their Premier League trip to Liverpool.

Last season's Champions League runners-up beat Red Star Belgrade 5-0 on Wednesday - just their fourth win in 12 matches, a run that led to talk of possible unrest behind the scenes.

However, Pochettino thinks the midweek meet-up could boost his players' morale as they prepare for a defining period in the campaign.

"It was very good, and very kind of them to invite the coaching staff," he said at Friday's pre-match news conference.

"It was a little busy. We spent a few hours there and it is always nice to see people in a different environment.

"That doesn't mean we are going to go to Anfield and win 5-0 because we were nice all together. But it is going to help in the long-term."

Sunday's match on Merseyside will be a repeat of June's Champions League final, which Liverpool won 2-0 through an early Mohamed Salah penalty and a late strike from Divock Origi. 

Nearly five months on, Pochettino admits he has just about managed to get the pain of the defeat in Madrid out of his system.

"The Champions League final is all or nothing and it was nothing," he said. "To be second for us is nothing.

"It means a lot of the club to reach final of Champions League but players and the staff felt empty after the game.

"With time you can say, 'OK we played in the final of the Champions League' but that will always be the deal.

"But we have spoken a lot now and we are back to full energy. We have recovered from that and it's the moment to build our confidence and trust and start to show our talent and potential."

Pochettino has a virtually fully fit squad to choose from this weekend, with captain Hugo Lloris his only confirmed absentee.

That could mean a debut for Ryan Sessegnon, who has been carrying a hamstring injury suffered on international duty during the close season.

"Maybe he will be available but it's always the same - when one is in, one is out," Pochettino said. 

"If you plan for him to be on the bench you need to take someone off the bench. It's about waiting, being consistent and showing his quality and to wait for the opportunity that he will have during the season."

Rodri is unlikely to feature again for Manchester City before the next international break, but Pep Guardiola was able to shed some light on Oleksandr Zinchenko's mystery injury.

Spain midfielder Rodri, who lined up at centre-back in City's past two matches, pulled up with an apparent hamstring problem during the 5-1 Champions League win over Atalanta in midweek.

Guardiola was hoping for positive news following scans but was told Rodri would likely not return until after the November internationals, which follow immediately after City's huge trip to Premier League leaders Liverpool.

"They told me that after the international break, [Rodri] will be ready again," Guardiola told a news conference ahead of facing Aston Villa on Saturday.

Another defensive option who will miss the Liverpool game is Zinchenko, who was ruled out of Champions League action this week with an unspecified knee injury.

The Ukraine international then uploaded a picture from a hospital bed, seemingly after surgery, but Guardiola is expecting the left-back to be back within four to six weeks.

"[Zinchenko] had a contact with the knee and felt something in the bone," he said. "He has to stop for four weeks, five weeks, more or less.

"He had something [surgery] to clean the knee. It's not a big issue, but five weeks, six weeks he will be out."

Rodri's absence could spell a return to first-team action for John Stones, who has started only twice in the league this season after ending the previous campaign out of the team.

"First choice? It's not about being first choice, it's about being fit," Guardiola said. "For a long time, [Stones] was injured in this period - a long, long time, many, many injuries.

"He could not play. Then he came back last season and Vinny [Kompany] and [Aymeric] Laporte were in incredible top form in a part of the season where I want to have regularity in the central defenders.

"This season, injury, injury, injury, injury. Sometimes, to get a rhythm, you need more time."

Jurgen Klopp refused to speculate on the reasons why Tottenham have failed to replicate their form of last season, but predicted a difficult test for his Liverpool side on Sunday.

The Merseysiders overcame Mauricio Pochettino's men in the Champions League final in June, with Spurs expected to challenge towards the top of the Premier League table again this term.

But Spurs have won just three of nine league games to sit 13 points behind leaders Liverpool and five adrift of fourth-placed Chelsea.

There have been reports of dressing room discontent but Klopp was unwilling to offer an outsider's view when asked to assess Tottenham ahead of the weekend clash at Anfield.

He said: "I can't say anything about the Tottenham situation.

"You are constantly asked to judge things from the outside but it's not possible.

"You have to be in the situation to understand the situation."

Spurs put aside their domestic troubles to thrash Red Star Belgrade 5-0 in the Champions League on Tuesday night with Harry Kane and Son Heung-min each scoring twice.

Klopp added: "Football is like this from time to time. It's not like they have forgotten how to play football. 

"You cannot fully understand it from the outside but they are always able to put in a proper performance on the pitch.

"We were very respectful with our Champions League celebrations but that will be, of course, another motivation for them to put things right.

"The situation around them will not make a massive difference. I don't know how many points they have but they won't play like a team that have that many. They are a top side in the Premier League and we have to respect that."

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has been reintegrated into the Liverpool squad in recent weeks after a long injury lay-off and stamped his mark on the team with two goals and a man-of-the-match display in the 4-1 Champions League win at Genk on Wednesday.

Klopp feels the England midfielder is now regaining the rhythm he inevitably lost after such a lengthy spell on the sidelines.

"It's nice, he had a big impact in the game at Manchester United [last Sunday] and in midweek," he said.

"It's no secret how much I like him as a person and a player.

"The goals against Genk were incredible. The second... I haven't seen one like this for a long time, if ever.

"Yes, he had a serious injury but he has been back a long time.

"The longer you're out, the longer you need to come back. The main thing you lose is your flow, your rhythm. It needs time and that's why we never lost patience. As a player it's harder not to lose patience in yourself because you remember what you can do.

"He has made big steps in recent weeks. My expectations for him are pretty high so there is more to come."

Trent Alexander-Arnold is expected to be fit, as is fellow full-back Andy Robertson, who was brought off after an hour in Belgium.

Liverpool will wait on Joel Matip while Xherdan Shaqiri has been ruled out.

Liverpool have won their High Court battle with kit supplier New Balance and are widely expected to announce Nike as their replacement.

The Reds entered a legal dispute with New Balance after reportedly agreeing a lucrative deal with Nike from the start of next season.

Friday's judgement ruled that Liverpool are free to fulfil an arrangement with an alternative supplier when their existing contract with New Balance expires next year.

A club statement read: "Liverpool FC is pleased with the judge's decision to rule in favour of the club following the legal dispute with our current kit supplier, New Balance.

"We will continue with New Balance for the current season, in combination with preparing next season's Liverpool kits with our new supplier."

Liverpool and Senegal forward Sadio Mane deserves to win the 2019 Ballon d'Or after a standout 12 months for club and country, according to Didier Drogba.

Mane started all 13 matches in Liverpool's glorious Champions League campaign last term and finished joint-top-scorer in the Premier League as his side missed out on the title by a point.

The 27-year-old then helped Senegal to the Africa Cup of Nations final, where they were beaten 1-0 by Algeria.

Mane has started 2019-20 in impressive form, too, and was this week included on the 30-man shortlist for the Ballon d'Or alongside six Liverpool team-mates.

He has Drogba's backing, as the former Chelsea explained to Paris Match.

"For the Cup of Nations, the Champions League and the Premier League [Mane deserves to win]," Drogba said. "What he does in the Premier League, very few players are able to do it."

George Weah is the only previous African player to have won the sport's top individual accolade, doing so in 1995, and Drogba is keen to see a new name in that select group.

"There are many players who have well represented the African continent, like Samuel Eto'o," he said.

"What is a pity is that when we talk about African player, we talk about the continent, we do not speak of a country. We will never say Kylian Mbappe represents the European continent. It is a small shift that is present.

"But to return to the question, it would be really nice if Sadio or even Mohamed Salah continue to raise their level of play to hope to win this trophy."

Virgil van Dijk insists playing behind an attack-minded midfield is all part of the spice of life for Liverpool's defenders.

Manager Jurgen Klopp used a new-look midfield three of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Naby Keita and Fabinho in Wednesday's 4-1 Champions League win against Genk.

Keita made only his second start of the season while Oxlade-Chamberlain scored twice on his first appearance in the competition since April 2018.

Genk caused problems for Liverpool's backline in the first half when space opened up in the final third, and Van Dijk concedes there is room for improvement, but he feels the Reds performed securely enough at Luminus Arena.

Asked if it had been more difficult to defend behind just one recognised holding midfielder in Fabinho, Van Dijk said: "I don't think so.

"We still had Fabinho in front of us who cleans up everything. They left one or two strikers up front and we tried to get involved. That's the way we play.

"We just have to do better at winning the second balls and in the transition with the counter-press."

Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah were also on target for Liverpool in Belgium after Oxlade-Chamberlain's double - his second strike an impressive outside-of-the-boot strike just before the hour mark.

Oxlade-Chamberlain has battled back from a serious knee injury sustained against Roma 18 months ago and Van Dijk is pleased to have the English midfielder back involved.

"He has worked so hard to get back to this point and he deserves a night like that," Van Dijk said.

"He's such a great guy, such an important guy for the group. He's a quality player and he showed it, not only with his goals but also with his all-round game.

"During a difficult period, he always managed to stay positive. We were all there for him.

"Pre-season was tough for him but he's showing a lot of great things right now. He's so sharp. His goals made the difference.

"The first one was so important and the second was a killer for them. It's just great to see him back out there."

Kylian Mbappe cannot win the Ballon d'Or with Paris Saint-Germain, according to former Liverpool forward El Hadji Diouf.

The talented 20-year-old finished fourth in the voting in 2018 after winning the World Cup with France.

Mbappe topped the scoring charts in Ligue 1 last season with 33 goals, but ex-Senegal international Diouf views performances in the Premier League as being more valuable.

He believes two of Liverpool's seven Ballon d'Or nominees deserve to join Lionel Messi in this year's top three.

"I think Sadio Mane had a better year than Kylian Mbappe," Diouf told Le Parisien. "He deserves the Ballon d'Or more from a personal and collective point of view.

"We cannot compare Ligue 1 and the Premier League. For me, it would be Messi, [Virgil] van Dijk and Mane, because of the league where they evolve.

"You know that to win the Ballon d'Or, you have to leave France.

"The only player who managed to win it by being in Ligue 1 is Jean-Pierre Papin. And he played in a Marseille team that reached the final of the Champions League [the 1990-91 European Cup].

"You can lose the final and win the Ballon d'Or, but you cannot if you are eliminated in the round of 16."

George Weah spent half of 1995 at PSG before switching to Serie A giants AC Milan and winning European football's top individual prize.

Diouf thinks the scorer of this week's sublime Champions League hat-trick against Club Brugge can claim the Ballon d'Or several times over if he makes a similar move to a leading club in an elite league.

In May, Mbappe hinted he could be ready for a new challenge, fuelling links to Real Madrid.

"He can win the Ballon d'Or at least five times, because he is so young and has talent," Diouf said. "But he has to go to an institution."

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