Sadio Mane has been Liverpool’s most important player since he signed from Southampton in 2016 despite Mohamed Salah’s class.
The Senegalese has been phenomenal this season but it’s not a once off. Rather, it’s a continuation of his development and a reflection of the last few years.
When Klopp siged him from Southampton foe £34million, he was the only player at the club with any real pace. Roberto Firmino was excellent on the ball, Coutinho was magical but they lacked pace.
So Mane arrived at the club with the task of beating players and creating goalscoring chances. In his first game, he beat three Arsenal defenders to score a world class goal from the wing.
It was immediately clear that Klopp and co. had signed an absolute worldie of a player.
He was vitally important to Liverpool finishing inside the top four that season.
The following season he was once again crucial in achieving Champions League qualification but also helped the team reach the final of the same tournament.
Fast forward 11 months and Mane has been the main man. His form during an extended dry spell for Mo Salah kept the Reds at the top of the table. He also knocked Bayern Munich out of Europe with a brace in Germany.
The 27-year-old has been criticised for his inconsistency or tendency to suffer a loss of form during the festive period.
With four games to go in the Premier League, Mane’s form will be hugely important. Liverpool are in touching distance of their first title in almost 30 years and four wins could see them over the line.
The former Southampton winger has been Liverpool’s most important player over the last three years and deserves to win the league in Red.
With the likes of Raheem Sterling and Eden Hazard receiving most of the plaudits this season, Mane deserves a lot more recognition.