Liverpool could axe two members of front three as part of striker strategy, expert says

Date published: Saturday 27th February 2021 1:15 - Samuel Bannister

Roberto Firmino, Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane Liverpool

Transfer expert Duncan Castles has claimed that Liverpool are “strategically” open to letting Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah leave.

Mane and Salah have established themselves as two of the best attacking players in the world in recent years. Playing either side of Roberto Firmino, they have formed a deadly front three.

This season, only Salah has reached double figures of Premier League goals so far. Mane and Firmino are still playing well in general, but their goal output has decreased.

Earlier in the season, Diogo Jota was pushing them for a starting berth, showing that it is possible to break up Liverpool’s front three.

As he nears a return from injury, Jota will be keeping the trio on their toes. But in the longer-term future, Liverpool’s attack may take up a different look.

Salah and Mane in particular have regularly been linked with moves away. Few clubs would be able to lure them away, but they are players of the calibre of Real Madrid or Barcelona.

At present, it seems unlikely that either of the La Liga rivals could afford them. That situation may change over time, though.

Links with Madrid and Barca will seemingly never go away for the African pair. Now, Castles has done little to dampen Liverpool’s fears of one day losing them.

Castles told the Transfer Window Podcast: “That front three, you’ve got three players who are in their late 20s.

“You’ve got two in particular in Sadio Mane and Mo Salah who have an interest in playing in Spain before they end their careers, who in normal circumstances at this point would be trying to get moves to Barcelona and Real Madrid with the idea that they’d get huge contracts there and that those clubs would pay substantial transfer fees for them.

“Liverpool, strategically, have made it clear that they’re open to allowing those players to leave if they don’t have the motivation and desire to stay at the club and the financial deals are in place for them to make substantial profits on them and to reinvest in the team.”

No rush for new contract

Previous reports have suggested that Liverpool are putting plans to give Salah a new contract on hold while they prioritise other deals.

Salah’s deal runs until 2023, by which time he will be 31 years old. Liverpool would surely be open to keeping him, but there is no rush to tie his services down yet.

Mane is also under contract until 2023 and will also be the same age at that time. There were rumours of a new deal for him back in the summer, but things have quietened since.


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Obviously, both players remain key for Liverpool and in an ideal world, the club would be looking to keep them.

However, they may one day have to reinvest for the future, with a number of younger attackers recently linked with the club.

For example, a report earlier this week named a Real Madrid winger as a potential target to replenish their attack in the long-term.

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