Sadio Mané has spent six massively successful seasons at Liverpool, the first major signing of the Jürgen Klopp era and a key part in the club having won every major trophy on offer. There remains a sense in some quarters, though, that he’s under-appreciated.
Mohamed Salah’s goals put Mané’s fellow winger in the Ballon d’Or conversation. Roberto Firmino’s unselfish link-up play was often credited for making the attack click. And there was Mané. That’s how the story goes if one buys into the talk that part of his reason for leaving would be to join a club where he’ll get more respect.
It’s the story that underpins talk, referenced by Mané in jest in recent weeks, back in his home nation of Senegal that the player would be better off making a fresh start somewhere else. And it’s talk that his national team manager appears to agree with.
“For me, the club where he will feel the best is Bayern,” Aliou Cisse said this week when asked about Mané’s future and rumours a move to Bayern Munich is close to done. “I tell my boys to try to work out the contract issues so that when their respective championships resume, they will have already found a base.
“I heard about Sadio at Bayern. For me it is a club that is of his standing. Bayern is intense, pressing football with a German coach. Sadio played in Salzburg in Austria which is a border country, and that means he is not going into unknown territory.”
With Liverpool in the process of completing their move to sign Darwin Núñez from Benfica in a blockbuster deal and rumours that Bayern will soon return with a third offer for Mané, it could be that we won’t have very much longer to wait now for this story to be settled.
Hopefully when it is, whatever the actual motivations for Mané wanting to leave Liverpool, it will be a move that brings both success and personal satisfaction for a player who has been at least as important as any other to the Reds’ recent success.