Thursday, May 19

Liverpool set to ‘open talks’ soon for crucial deal in tandem with priority task

Liverpool want to enter negotiations with another attacker in addition to Mohamed Salah, according to transfer reporter Fabrizio Romano – who claims Sadio Mane is also in line for a new deal.

It is currently a priority task for Liverpool to tie down the long-term future of Salah. The winger is one of the most in-form players in the world, but is only under contract until 2023. They are at risk of losing him next year if they don’t improve his current terms.

Salah wants to stay, but has confessed there are other factors at play. If Liverpool were to end up losing him, he would leave a major void in their attack.

Perhaps with that in mind, they are aiming to secure not just his services for the long-term, but also those of fellow forward Mane.

According to transfer reporter Romano, Liverpool hope to enter talks with Mane over a new deal in the New Year.

Like Salah, Mane is out of contract in 2023. His own form took a hit last season, when he only scored 11 Premier League goals. But he has looked more like his usual self this term, netting seven in the competition so far.

Therefore, Liverpool are ready to keep their faith in the former Southampton wide man, who has been with them since 2016.

Romano told Empire of the Kop: “For Sadio Mane, I am told from people close to the player that they want to open talks in 2022 with Sadio Mane, to be prepared to open negotiations to enter into details.

“I see Sadio Mane in negotiation with Liverpool very soon to find an agreement.

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“But they are thinking also of Mane, they are just talking about Salah, I see it around it seems it’s only Mo Salah but also for Sadio Mane they want to go and negotiate and have a new long-term deal for him.”

Across his Liverpool career so far, Mane has 106 goals from 238 games. He has been a part of four trophy wins with the club.

Liverpool will be without him for a short time in January due to his involvement at the African Cup of Nations with Senegal. However, when he returns for club duties, he will have many more Liverpool appearances ahead of him.

Sadio Mane AFCON involvement subject of debate

Liverpool forward in action verus Norwich in their 3-0 victory 2021

Jurgen Klopp recently bemoaned the upcoming AFCON as another disruption to Liverpool’s season. They will be without Salah, Mane and midfielder Naby Keita.

Klopp ironically referred to the competition as a “little tournament” when explaining why the idea that there is no international break until March is a myth.

His comments drew some criticism, forcing him to clarify his intentions.

“I said: ‘there’s no international break anymore until March’ and I said: ‘Oh and there’s a little tournament in January,’ and I didn’t mean a little tournament, just like you say it when there’s still a tournament. It’s ironic,” he confirmed.

“There’s still a tournament. A big one. We lose our best players to the Africa Cup of Nations.

“I’m not a native speaker, but if you want to understand me wrong you can do that all the time. I know that I would never think like this.”

But Mane’s international boss Aliou Cisse has not taken kindly to Klopp’s explanations anyway.

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“Who does Klopp think he is?” Cisse said. “I manage Senegal and my players play for Klopp at Liverpool.

“I respect Liverpool but not Klopp who undermines African football events. He is where he is today because of African footballers.

“He was losing every final until Salah, Mane, Matip came to his rescue to win his first-ever major European final.

“Today, he has the guts to call AFCON a ‘small tournament’. AFCON has the same number of participants, 24, as the UEFA Euro. So who does he think he is?

“AFCON will have the same superstars that are currently helping him to shine at Liverpool. AFCON is the same quality as the Euros.”

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