The No. 10 shirt has been sitting on the shelf since the departure of Philippe Coutinho to Barcelona in January. Liverpool were expected to hand it to Nabil Fekir but that deal as gone dark and with Jürgen Klopp claiming Thursday that the incoming business has concluded, the coveted shirt’s future was cloudy. Until now. Sadio Mané stepped up to stake his claim as Liverpool’s new No. 10 and the club have made his move from No. 19 official.
Mané joins the ranks of great No. 10’s at Liverpool like John Barnes, Michael Owen and, the better-than-Messi, Joe Cole. Mané already wears the ten when playing for his country and also wore the number at Southampton. He likes the ten.
So it seems that Liverpool will not be bringing in a player such as Fekir to replace Coutinho. Or it’s a terrific smokescreen.
Giving the No. 10 shirt to Mané pairs up well with Klopp’s comments on the end of the club’s summer business. It says there isn’t going to be a player coming in to take up the No. 10 position who would expect the No. 10 shirt.
But then, Fekir wears the No. 18 at Lyon so that gives us a little window of hope to torture ourselves with until the season starts. Enjoy.
And if you’ve purchased a ‘Mane 19’ for the coming season, the club is offering exchanges for a ‘Mane 10.’ Get on it.