Mane defends under-fire Liverpool man: ‘He’s my favourite team-mate’

Matthew Briggs
Sadio Mane TEAMtalk

Sadio Mane believes Roberto Firmino should get more plaudits than both himself and Mo Salah at Liverpool.

The exact opposite is true at Anfield. It’s Mane and Salah who take the praise with Brazilian Firmino usually well down the pecking order.

That has been the case even more so this season with Firmino’s output under scrutiny. The 29-year-old has scored six goals and grabbed five assists in 25 Premier League games this season.

Jamie Carragher said in January he was worried about Firmino’s future at Liverpool.

Mane though, who only has one more Premier League goal than Firmino this season, is a big fan of his team-mate.

Mane told ESPN Brasil his pal “deserves more credit” than his fellow forwards.

“He deserves more credit than me and Mo, for sure. But it is part of football, always seeing the goals scored,” Mane said.

“But I think without Bobby I don’t see myself or Mo scoring as many goals as we have, to be honest.

“He makes everything easier for us. Brazil is lucky to have Firmino. I always say to Bobby ‘you have to change your nationality and maybe come to Senegal’ – which for me would be a dream!

“I just love him and he is my favourite team-mate.”


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Trent explains Liverpool problems

Meanwhile, Trent Alexander-Arnold believes Liverpool have fallen into a “trap” laced with complacency which has resulted in their dire run of form.

The Reds were labelled the “bad champions” by Roy Keane at the start of the month. And it’s hard to disagree with the former Manchester United man.

Their drop off from last season has been monumental and they face a fight to finish in the top four this time around.

The Reds were champions last season with 99 points, but after 25 games this campaign they have just 40 points. They trail the leaders Man City by 19 points.

The weekend’s derby defeat to Everton was their fourth consecutive home league defeat – the first time that has happened since 1923.

And Alexander-Arnold thinks the Reds have just expected things to get better.

“The trap we have probably fallen into this season is that we’ve almost expected to win games on some occasions because we know we have the quality to find that goal from somewhere,” he said in the official Liverpool FC matchday programme.