Fabrizio Romano has told Rio Ferdinand’s YouTube channel that he has been told that Liverpool have not yet opened contract talks with Sadio Mane, as he suggested that he sees Luis Diaz eventually replacing the forward at Anfield.
Diaz joined the Reds in one of the most exciting deals of the January transfer window. The Colombian had been outstanding for Porto this season. He had scored 16 goals across the top-flight and the Champions League.
It looks to have been a real coup for Liverpool, particularly with some uncertainty surrounding their forwards’ futures on Merseyside. Transfermarkt shows that Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Mane are all out of contract at the end of next season.
The trio will all be into their 30s by the time the next campaign arrives. So it is little surprise that Jurgen Klopp is looking at adding to his options. And it will be fascinating to see how the Liverpool boss uses Diaz in the months ahead.
Romano insisted that nothing on Mane’s future has been decided. But, perhaps ominously, he did suggest that the two parties are yet to open talks over a new contract at Anfield.
“My answer is yes, to be honest,” he said, when asked about Diaz being the replacement for Mane. “I think they know that they have a dangerous situation with contracts.
“They are working for Mo Salah. He’s the priority. But what I’m told, for Mane, they are not even in conversation yet. And he is out of contract in 2023. I’m not saying that Mane’s leaving Liverpool. But they are not talking about a new contract at the moment.”
Mane still has big role to play, but Liverpool have made brilliant move with Diaz deal
It is too soon to write Mane off. He has struggled for form in recent months. But he is still one of the top goalscorers in the Premier League, with eight strikes already.
In fact, he should comfortably pass his tally from last season. So he still has plenty to offer in the months ahead.
Having said that, Liverpool look to have made an incredibly smart move signing Diaz. They now have an amazing group of attacking players.
It is obviously unlikely that the Reds are going to replace Mane, Salah and Firmino at the same time. But they are not far off being in a position where they could theoretically put together a world-class forward line made up of three completely different players.
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