For Liverpool, Sadio Mane is a “package deal” and nothing can be interpreted into his recent fight for goals, says John Barnes.
Throughout an unforgettable spell on Merseyside, the Senegal international was a prolific force for the Reds.
Through 193 appearances, a healthy return of 88 goals has been registered, with those efforts helping to deliver crowns from the Champions League, UEFA Super Cup, FIFA Club World Cup and Premier League.
In his last 13 games, however, Mane has hit the target on only two occasions, and three times in 18 outings.
With Roberto Firmino having his worth called into question when going through a barren run, he isn’t the first to suffer such a drought, but Barnes sees no cause for concern at Anfield.
The Reds legend told BonusCodeBets about the contribution of Mane: “This is very much the same thing that we spoke with Firmino about last year; where we won the league by 20 points but people complained that he didn’t score enough goals.” But, he played every game and contributed to the overall success of the squad.
First of all, it’s important to note that Mane was one of the team’s most important players and that his form was outstanding. In terms of the number of goals scored, maybe not outstanding, but excellent in terms of what he does for the squad. I might also say that Mane has a lot to do with why we’re at the top of the table, and it’s all done on and off the ball.
His ambitions, his imagination – it’s a package deal. So, I don’t see why all this is doom and gloom for the top team in the league.
And yes, our way has not been in the last two games, but that could easily be brought around but I expect them to do so.
But I don’t think it’s fair to begin whining and claiming that the players are underperforming, because that’s exactly what happens in football, to everyone in that squad. You win a few and you lose a few, simple as that.
But Liverpool is a great team and they do not condemn or scrutinize the way they play. You’ll have good days and not so great days, like any team, but it comes down to consistency, and that’s something that this team has proved to be.
In a 1-0 loss to former club Southampton, Mane drew his last blank, with the reigning Premier League champions still winless in three and giving the chasing pack hope that they could be knocked from the loftiest of perches.