But, rather than an honest piece of play from a forward trying to score a goal, Owen suggested Mane was sabotaging his long-term team-mate’s hunt for the Golden Boot.
“There was an occasion in the first half where every single Liverpool fan in the world probably thought ‘Penalty!’ – I couldn’t believe he didn’t go down,” Owen said on Optus Sport.
“I’m not advocating he does, (but) normally you see attacking players (go down)… I just wonder whether he is thinking, ‘Hang on a minute, I’m going to score, because if I don’t stand on my feet Mo Salah is going to get another penalty’.
“We all know how competitive attacking players are. We all know how selfish, in a way, strikers are. These players have been going for the Golden Boot the last couple of seasons.”
Salah won the Golden Boot outright in 2017-18, before he and Mane shared the award with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang the following season.
Owen continued: “I just wonder, I might be far off the mark, whether if he was dancing around a player thinking he could get a shot off, if he is thinking ‘this is my opportunity to score’.
“The competitive nature between him and Mo Salah. It might be a wild theory, but we’ve seen them not passing to each other when one is in a perfectly better position than the other, and it just makes me wonder.
“We are talking about selfishness and [being] a little bit disgruntled, we’ve seen Salah shaking his head [when substituted], we know how much they want to win the Golden Boot, I just think a couple times there I’ve seen Sadio Mane go down there.
“Two games on the spin when the opportunity is there… it just made me think a little bit.”