Sadio Mane would have been in-line for a contract extension at Liverpool had he wanted to stay at Anfield.
That’s according to The Telegraph, who claim that Liverpool ‘would have’ offered Mane a new contract. However, the Senegal international was keen to move on.
It’s claimed that Mohamed Salah’s new deal being sorted so soon after Mane had left ‘cannot be coincidental.’
The suggestion is that both Mane and Divock Origi leaving freed up the space on the wage bill to go extra large on Salah’s wages.
Mane or Salah, but not both
It seems unlikely that Liverpool would have been able to tie both Salah and Mane to new contracts this summer.
The reasons given make it plausible that Liverpool could offer Salah that kind of sum. However, to spend £700k-per-week on two players is simply not in the Reds playbook.
In that respect, the fact that Mane wanted to leave may have saved Liverpool from an incredibly difficult decision.
As it has worked out, many fans wouldn’t complain too much. It’s slightly more palatable to lose Mane over Salah, given that the Egyptian has top-scored for the club in each of his five seasons at Liverpool.
But either way, Liverpool have lost a world-class performer, one who Jamie Carragher recently labelled as ‘unbelievable’ via Sky Sports.
It’s up for debate what Mane’s reaction to Salah’s new deal at Liverpool has been. The Bayern star is yet to comment publicly on his old teammate staying at Anfield, and perhaps he never will.
We’ll never truly know whether Mane would have accepted a new contract from Liverpool. But as the dust now starts to settle on his Liverpool career, his old buddy Salah is just getting started.