Premier League • England

Liverpool praised for acting quickly to avoid Sadio Mane repeat with ‘brilliant’ Diogo Jota

Liverpool star Diogo Jota

A pundit thinks Liverpool have done well to tie Diogo Jota down to a new deal, which should help to prevent him from going down the same path as Sadio Mane.

Senegal international Mane was set to enter the final 12 months of his Liverpool contract in July. Bayern Munich used his contract situation to agree a deal with Liverpool before then.

Mane became a Bayern player on June 22, following the announcement of an agreement between the German titans and Liverpool.

As per BBC Sport, Bayern paid the Reds around £35million to take the versatile forward to the Bundesliga.

Liverpool could have gotten far more for Mane if it weren’t for him being 30 and the fact his contract was running down.

Jurgen Klopp’s side have clearly been stung by Mane’s exit and have taken steps to prevent other players from going on the cheap.

Mo Salah, Joe Gomez and Harvey Elliott have all penned new deals this summer. So too has Jota.

He has pledged his long-term future to Liverpool by agreeing a new five-year contract at Anfield.

Diogo Jota ‘proud’ after agreeing new contract

Following the announcement of the fresh terms, Jota said: “Really proud, I have to say.

“Obviously since I arrived two years ago I established myself as an important player in this team – that’s what I wanted from the beginning.

“Now, signing a new long-term deal, it’s obviously from the club’s perspective proof of the belief in myself as a player.

“For me, obviously it’s really good to establish I’ll be here for a while. So, the beginning of a new season, let’s do it.”

And former attacker Gabby Agbonlahor thinks this is a clever move from the Merseyside club. He reckons Jota is a ‘brilliant player’ and Liverpool would struggle if he left.

“I feel he will play [this season],” Agbonlahor said during an interview with Football Insider.

“Liverpool are in that many competitions, there will be games when Luis Diaz doesn’t play and Jota starts on the left. There will be a lot of rotation so he’ll get his game time.

New Jota deal ‘makes sense’ – pundit

“Liverpool probably don’t want players going down to one or two years anymore. Mane left when he had a year left, they don’t want that problem with Jota so it makes sense.

“You know he’s a brilliant player, keep those players with at least three years on their contract, don’t let them go under two years.”

Agbonlahor is right. Liverpool need to prevent their top players, including Salah, Virgil van Dijk and Alisson, from coming towards the end of their contracts.

This will stop other clubs from taking such a keen interest. A player will plenty of time left on his contract costs big money, unlike those heading towards free agency.

The Reds still have work to do though. Roberto Firmino and Naby Keita are among the players who have deals expiring next summer.

Meanwhile, Klopp has told reporters what Liverpool’s transfer plans are following a string of injuries in midfield.