Sadio Mane will finalise his transfer to Bayern Munich in the coming days after new details emerged over why Liverpool decided to sanction the forward’s departure.
Mane has been a huge factor in the success enjoyed by Liverpool in recent years. He has scored 120 goals in 269 appearances for the club, winning everything there is to be won. In 2022 alone, Mane has won the FA Cup, the Carabao Cup and also helped his country, Senegal, to a maiden AFCON success.
However, with a year left on his contract at Anfield, Liverpool were always going to face a difficult decision this summer. Indeed, his fellow forwards Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah also see their deals expire at Anfield in summer 2023.
As far as Salah is concerned, Liverpool have made clear their desire to keep him. They are offeirng him a deal that makes him the highest-paid player in their history. And while an agreement is yet to be reached, Salah himself suggests he plans to stay next season.
With Liverpool setting their stall out with Salah, it seems a very different story with Mane.
The Senegalese forward is on the brink of a move to Bayern Munich. The German giants’ third offer for the player has been accepted, according to multiple sources.
As per Fabrizio Romano, his transfer will go through on Tuesday with Mane undergoing a medical.
They will pay the Reds £27.4m (€32m) immediately for the Mane transfer. They could then add £7.7m (€9m) in bonuses; £5.1m (€6m) will be related to his appearance tallies, while the other £2.6m (€2.6m) will be determined by team and individual achievements.
That will take their total outlay for the 30-year-old to £35.1m.
Star wanted to become top Liverpool earner
Indeed, some have questioned the wisdom of the sale, with Jamie Carragher one of the more vocal opposed to his sale.
His contract was allowed to drift towards its final year without anything solid emerging over an extension.
But now the Daily Mirror claims Mane was allowed to leave after a breakdown in talks between club and player.
They claim Mane asked Liverpool to make him the club’s top earner; something FSG were opposed to.
And with Mane seeking a deal to 2025, the Reds’ owners felt they had little wriggle room over negotiations.
The situation was forced to a head when the news was relayed to Jurgen Klopp. Knowing Mane was also making noises about seeking one final career challenge, it was Klopp who ultimately made the decision to move Mane on.
That decision was conveyed to teammates in the days prior to the Champions League final.
And with Bayern Munich already lurking on the scene, it was just a question of when, not if, the move would get sanctioned.
Liverpool, for their part, were reportedly seeking nearer the £40m mark for the striker. But with Bayern lowballing them with their first two bids, the club now feels they have secured a decent deal given the situation.
Sadio Mane will depart a Liverpool hero
For all written about Sadio Mane, it’s important to remember just how big a player he has been for Liverpool. His £34m capture from Southampton back in 2016 will have been welcomed – but few would have expected the Senegalese star to be as good as he has.
Never injured, or one to complain, Mane has been one of the most consistent performers for the Reds. Playing a leading role in their success, his phenomenal work-rate and eye for goal will be much missed at Anfield.
Often in the shadow of Salah, you can’t blame him for asking for financial recompense as a reward for his success.
Ultimately though, his situation was probably undermined by the fact that Salah and Firmino are in the same boat. And with all three in the same age bracket, ultimately something had to give.
Thiago offers Sadio Mane his house in Munich ahead of Bayern move
Liverpool midfielder Thiago has offered Sadio Mane his house in Munich if the winger moves to Bayern Munich this summer.
Klopp recognises too that all top teams must evolve. That fact is laid bare by Liverpool now spending a combined £140m on Luis Diaz and Darwin Nunez.
Despite that fact, Mane will depart Anfield a hero. His efforts in one of the most successful periods in their history will not be forgotten.
But as one door closes, another one opens for Mane. As such, Bayern will have good reason to think they have made an astute signing themselves.