Jamie Carragher says Sadio Mane ‘will have to deal with me’ amid reports linking the Liverpool winger to Bayern Munich, after the Senegalese kept his side in the Premier League title chase with a winner at Aston Villa .
Just a day after Sky Germany revealed Bayern’s interest in Liverpool’s No.10, Mane produced a brilliant header to complete a vital turnaround for Liverpool in a 2-1 win at Villa Park on Tuesday night.
The 30-year-old showed great athleticism to drive home Luis Diaz’s cross in the second half – after Joel Matip canceled out Douglas Luiz’s opener in a frenetic start – with the team Jurgen Klopp now level on points with Manchester City at the top of the table.
Carragher not only described Mane as his ‘favorite player’ among the Liverpool squad – but even claimed the 30-year-old was just as important as 30-goal star Mohamed Salah to the Reds’ fortunes, the winger Egyptian being only a substitute. Tuesday evening.
“When I watched Liverpool as a fan, Sadio Mane is my favorite player,” said Carragher sky sports. “There’s just something about Mane. He sacrificed himself at times and the change he brings about.
“He, along with Salah, have been doing this for five years – they are never injured! They are there week after week for 90 minutes, pushing the numbers up every week. What they have done for this football club is amazing.
“I’m a big fan of Sadio Mane and I can assure you he’s not going anywhere because I won’t let him go to Bayern Munich, he would have to take care of me!
“I love him, I absolutely love him to bits. And not just because he’s a great player and what he’s done for Liverpool.
“He first came in on the right wing and then moved to the left when Salah came on. Diaz comes in on the left and Mane comes through at centre-forward.
“He’s always moving for someone else but his performance never goes down. It doesn’t matter where Mane plays you get exactly the same from him, the same can’t be said for the rest of Liverpool’s attack.”
Klopp: Mane is a machine
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp described their winner as “world class” and “a machine”.
The winner at Villa was Mane’s 22nd goal of the season in all competitions – his 15th in the Premier League. The Senegal international has now overtaken Jota as Liverpool’s second top scorer this season, behind Salah.
“He’s a machine, I told him after the game,” Klopp said sky sports. “[He’s a] massive player, his physique is brutal. The mix of technique, desire and physicality.
“You can see [he has] a few meters in the legs, we see it to be honest. He’s a fantastic world-class player.
“His performance was incredible,” added captain Jordan Henderson. “The work he does with the ball for the team was amazing, defending at the end. But his quality in and around the box – that’s the gym, isn’t it with those neck muscles! “
Mane: I’m happy at Liverpool
Mane did not speak specifically about his personal future but revealed he is happy at the club – especially when the team he currently plays for continues to lift trophies.
Mane, who has won five major accolades since joining the club from Southampton in 2016, has just one year left on his contract after this season – but could end the current campaign with three more trophies to his name.
“When we won the trophies I was happier,” said Mane sky sports. “I just try to enjoy every moment and try to score and help my teammates.
“It’s for the team or nothing, the boys make it easy for me. I’m very happy.”
Speaking about his goal against Villa, Mane added: “It was a good cross from Diaz and I was in the box so I just had to put it in the net. Even without power I usually score and c that’s what I tried to do.
“I know him very well, he’s a good player. We train every day and when he gets the ball, honestly I knew he was going to cross.”
Liverpool match schedule
May 14 – Chelsea (Wembley) FA Cup Final
May 17 – Southampton Premier League, live on Sky Sports
May 22 – Wolves (h) premier league
May 28 – Real Madrid Champions League final