Published on :
Bayern Munich formalized the arrival of African superstar Sadio Mané on Wednesday. The Senegalese turns the page of six years in Liverpool where he gradually became one of the best players in the world.
For the German press, it is “the royal transfer from Bayern”. The arrival of Sadio Mané, made official on Wednesday June 22, is the most spectacular blow in the history of the “Rekordmeister”, which has rarely offered players of this standing.
The Senegalese, candidate for the Ballon d’Or, indeed arrives in Bavaria at the height of his glory, in a club usually accustomed to attracting promising players to then raise them to star status: Franck Ribéry, Arjen Robben, Manuel Neuer, Robert Lewandowski…
At 30, Mané will have cost the Germans an estimated amount of around 40 million euros, for a contract that runs until 2025.
But the investment seemed essential, as two of Munich’s star strikers, Robert Lewandowski and Serge Gnabry, could leave the squad at the end of the season. The Polish striker, double best player in Fifa 2020 and 2021, has very clearly expressed his desire to leave, even if it means going into a clash with his leaders, when he has one year left on his contract.
He won everything with Liverpool
Admittedly, his statistics do not make Mané a clone of Lewandowski, the man with more than 40 goals per season. But the Senegalese still scored 111 times in 263 Premier League appearances with Southampton FC (from 2014 to 2016) and Liverpool (from 2016), not counting 47 assists.
In his 55 Champions League appearances, he scored 24 goals, along with eight assists.
Before joining England, Mané had made a name for himself at RB Salzburg (63 matches/31 goals), where he learned German. But it was at Liverpool that he achieved his world star status, and became a legend to the thousands of Reds fans.
For this son of an imam from a village in Casamance, the road to glory has never been a long calm river.
“In the village, you are going to be a farmer, there is no other job to do. My childhood dream was to write history and win all the trophies”, he had told in a Rakuten TV documentary, “Sadio Mané: Made in Senegal”.
Spotted by Metz, in a partner club in Dakar, where he had gone into exile 400 km from his native village, he joined the Old Continent in the middle of the Lorraine winter, at the start of 2011.
>> To read also: “Sadio Mané, from Generation Foot in Senegal to the African Ballon d’Or”
Three years later, he left for RB Salzburg, the club from which Naby Keita, Erling Haaland and Dayot Upamecano, among others, came out.
In Austria, he progressed in all areas of his game, and was ready, in 2014, to try the adventure of the Premier League, in Southampton for two seasons, then in Liverpool, where he became the second highest transfer. in the history of the Reds, at the time, for 37 million pounds (43 million euros).
With Roberto Firmino, Mohamed Salah or Virgil van Dijk, he is one of those recruits of the years 2015-2018 who transformed the face of Liverpool and brought the club back to the top of the English and European hierarchy.
Rigour, with Mané, is not an empty word. His life revolves around three poles: football, the maintenance of his body to be as competitive as possible, and prayer, religion having an important but discreet place in his life.
But at 30, after offering the first African Cup of Nations in its history to Senegal, then a ticket for Qatar, by converting two decisive shots on goal, Mané felt he needed a new challenge. He had announced even before the lost Champions League final his intention to leave Liverpool.