Sadio Mane gave something of a flippant response when questioned by the Spanish media over claims he will quit Liverpool and look to join Real Madrid or Barcelona this summer.
The flying winger, who has hit 20 Premier League goals this term to put himself in the frame for the Golden Boot, has been heavily linked with a move to Real Madrid.
Mane’s superb form is understood to have alerted new Real boss Zinedine Zidane, with reports earlier this month from El Confidencial claiming that Real were urging Mane to tell Liverpool he wants to leave.
Mane though, who signed a new five-year deal in November, remains completely unfazed by the talk – but did admit that Spanish football had made an impression on him.
“Very good question! You guys write it…” was Mane’s response when asked by Spanish journalists about a potential move to LaLiga this summer.
“I respect LaLiga is a good league, they have great players, but the Premier League is also a wonderful league and every single player would want to play there.
“So I have a chance to play there and I am very happy, so that’s cool.”
But Spanish football has already left a lasting impression on Mane, and one former Barcelona player in particular.
“Ronaldinho was one of my heroes. I really loved watching him play, especially here at Camp Nou,” he said.
“I would have loved to play against him. Him not being here now is an advantage for us! I still love him. He is still my hero forever.
“I loved his skills, his smile for sure. Maybe when I’m not smiling on the pitch people think I am angry. I would love to have his smile, but we’re not similar like that.”
Mane’s comments follow up comments made by the Senegalese forward earlier this month, when he also rejected all reports of a possible move to the Bernabeu.
Mane told the official LFC magazine: “Of course I want to be a legend not only for Liverpool but also in the Premier League story and that is one of my targets. I will do everything possible to achieve everything possible.
“Reaching 100 games means a lot to me. To play this many games for a club like Liverpool is incredible.
“Like I have always said, I am very happy to play for this club and every single day I am enjoying being here and trying to do everything to win something for this club.”
The 27-year-old Senegal star also revealed his praise for Jurgen Klopp.
Mane added: ‘To be honest he is a great man, you can see it and he is a lovely person.
“He loves all his players and is very close to his players too. He also demands a lot but he never puts pressure on us other than asking the best of us.
“He only asks you to do your best in whatever you are doing and also to enjoy it.
“I think that’s important because, under him, everybody has progressed a lot as everyone can see. It’s very important for us to work with him for more years.”
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