Sadio Mane Proves He Is Indispensable To Liverpool In Aston Villa Win

The Senegal international said after his match-winning performance, "I'm honestly very happy. I am just trying to enjoy every moment and assist my team-mates. Without my team-mates, I'm nothing."

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Sadio Mane Proves He Is Indispensable To Liverpool In Aston Villa Win - SportRazzi
Sadio Mane Proves He Is Indispensable To Liverpool In Aston Villa Win.

Sadio Mane has shown that he is indispensable to Jurgen Klopp’s team as the 30-year-old Senegal forward has a quiet, understated personality but is a devastating attacking operator who has been instrumental in Liverpool’s recent resurgence.

Mane was instrumental in Liverpool winning the Champions League in 2019 and their first English title in 30 years the following season, establishing them as the Premier League’s two standout sides and among Europe’s elite.

And, with a subtle turn of his head, Mane made another crucial contribution at Villa Park, just as Liverpool’s bid for a historic quadruple appeared to be in jeopardy following Saturday’s draw with Tottenham.

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Only a win would suffice for Liverpool, and with the score tied 1-1 after 65 minutes, the tension was rising. Sadio Mane then demonstrated his relevance once more.

The exceptional Luis Diaz created the opportunity with a not-quite-perfect cross, but Mane’s awareness, precision, and athleticism allowed him to angle a header beyond Villa keeper Emiliano Martinez’s outstretched left arm even though he was almost on the retreat.

It was a crucial moment, with a somewhat chaotic Liverpool performance still bringing them three points, leaving them trailing leaders Manchester City only on goal difference with two games remaining. City will now have to respond at Wolves on Wednesday.

Klopp appeared to be surgically removed from around Mane as he hugged him after the final whistle, public recognition of his worth. And it all happened amid speculation about Mane’s long-term future at Liverpool.

All eyes have been on whether Mohamed Salah will agree to a new Liverpool contract, with talks dragging on and no firm resolution in sight – but what about Mane?

Mane’s Liverpool contract expires after next season, and if Salah’s contract is the top priority for Liverpool’s decision makers after Klopp’s new contract, then Mane should not be far behind.

Since joining Liverpool from Southampton for £34 million in June 2016, he has played 266 games in all competitions, with his goal at Villa Park bringing his total to 119. This season, he has 22 goals in 48 games across all competitions, including 15 in 33 league games.

These are very clear statistics that shows Mane is a top-tier player. He is selfless and can contribute to Klopp’s preferred front-three attacking system.

Bayern Munich and even Real Madrid have been linked with Mane this week, and it is easy to see why any club in Europe would want him – but Liverpool will.

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The Senegal international said after his match-winning performance, “I’m honestly very happy. I am just trying to enjoy every moment and assist my team-mates. Without my team-mates, I’m nothing.”

Speaking about his understanding with the electric Diaz, Mane said, “We know each other well from training every day. When he got the ball I knew he was going to cross so I was just going to be ready for it.”

“He’s a machine. I told him after the game. He’s a massive, massive player. His physicality is brutal, and this mix of technique, desire and then physicality – in the moment when everybody obviously has a few yards in the legs you can see it with him, to be honest. Top goal, a fantastic world class player,” Klopp said of Mane.

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