Liverpool: What could Jurgen Klopp do if Sadio Mane leaves this summer?

Liverpool: What could Jurgen Klopp do if Sadio Mane leaves this summer?

It is becoming increasingly clear that the last glimpse of Sadio Mane in the famous Liverpool red may have come during their celebration parade this weekend. Cap on his head and wearing a scarf, it was perhaps his farewell.

The open-top bus tour was meant to be a moment to draw a happy line under what has ultimately been a successful season for the club, following their FA Cup and Carabao Cup triumphs. It was, however, marred by the uncertainty surrounding Mane.

With just 12 months remaining on his contract and a desire to leave this summer, it really looks like the striker will leave Anfield. He leaves as an all-time great, but leaves behind a gaping hole that Jurgen Klopp will have to fill.

Sadio Mane may well have bid farewell to Liverpool fans during their open top bus parade

The striker is keen to leave and Bayern Munich are in pole position to sign him

sports mail reported recently that Mane is intrigued by a move to Bayern Munich and it is understood the Bundesliga giants are indeed in pole position.

With Paris’ grief still throbbing softly in the background, Reds supporters are sure to be appalled by the news, such is the level of its impact. During his six-year stint, he became one of the most feared strikers in the world.

The writing was on the wall after the full-time whistle in Paris, however.

Mane was a notable absentee from the mixed zone and has yet to officially address his future. He has yet to inform Liverpool officials of his next move, according to reports.

The Reds chiefs are yet to receive confirmation of his decision and will hold out for a hefty sum

What is known is that he wants a new challenge and Bayern Munich want to play him alongside Robert Lewandowski – provided he doesn’t leave for Barcelona.

It is far from an easy deal to close. Those at Anfield want big money for their striker but haven’t ruled out the possibility that he stays to see out the final year of his contract. It all depends on how agitated Mane is to leave now.

Paris Saint-Germain are also keeping tabs on their situation, it is believed, but their target are enjoying the border area in southern Germany and the set-up at Bayern.

In addition, sports mail reported that Liverpool would only consider a future without Mane if the clubs were willing to pay upwards of £35million, giving them an area in which to do business. New sporting director Julian Ward will hold firm.

Mane has had a superb season for his club, who will want more than £35m to let him go

Landing a good package will be vital for the club if they are to embark on the search for a replacement, although that is far from certain before the window.

Mane flourished in the second half of the season, having scored 13 of his 23 goals after winning the Africa Cup of Nations with Senegal earlier this year.

He also took his new role at No.9 like a duck to water, with the signing of Porto’s Luis Diaz reshuffling the usual front three deployed by boss Klopp.

But as the season continued and Liverpool failed to agree an extension with him, the possibility of him spending the summer grew and grew.

His teammates will want him to stay at Anfield, such is the impact he has had since joining

The ball is well in Bayern’s court, who will have to pick up the slack and move forward with an offer worthy of consideration, but contingency plans could be drawn up.

On that front, it’s understood the Reds may not be looking to replace Mane directly.

They have brought forward their deal for Diaz until the winter window and also have no plans to loan out the talented Fabio Carvalho, expecting him to make an impact next season after his recent arrival from Fulham in a £5m deal.

sports mail understands, however, that there are several players on their radar. Serge Gnabry, curiously from Bayern, is appreciated, and has one year left on his contract.

Fabio Carvalho will stay with the first team next season but the starlet shouldn’t be counted on

Bayern winger Serge Gnabry is valued at Liverpool and also has a year left on his contract

Watford duo Joao Pedro and Ismaila Sarr have also caught the eye. The club are keen to keep Pedro, although there may be concerns over the latter’s intelligence in the game.

It’s likely that Ousmane Dembele will be offered to Liverpool given his uncertain future at Barcelona. A free transfer like this has already been taken by the Reds but the winger’s wages and character may prove problematic.

Chelsea’s Christian Pulisic is another player Klopp likes but, as things stand, no deal is likely for his current valuation. Elsewhere, Arnaut Danjuma, who enjoyed a blistering campaign for Villarreal after joining Bournemouth, could be a target.

With Divock Origi leaving on a free transfer and offers for Takumi Minamino to be fielded, it looks like Liverpool need at least one more striker for next year.

Chelsea’s Christian Pulisic is another Jurgen Klopp favorite but a deal is unlikely as it stands

Arnaut Danjuma has had a superb season for Villarreal, and could well be a target too

It should be noted that nothing has been decided on Mane’s future, and his words ahead of the Champions League final left the door open for all scenarios.

‘Come back to me after Saturday and I’ll give you the best answer you want to hear, that’s for sure. It’s special, he said with a smile. “I’ll give you everything you want to hear then.” »

His manager, however, did not speculate on his talisman. Indeed, when asked about his future, he said that “wherever Sadio plays next season, he will be an important player”. Was it genuine uncertainty or an attempt to soften the blow?

When Liverpool were struggling in their bid to break Real Madrid, it was Mane who stood head and shoulders above the rest. The trophy would surely have returned to England too if his 20th-minute shot had beaten Thibaut Courtois.

Steven Gerrard warned Mane not to make a mistake when leaving but his exit looms

Even legend Steven Gerrard warned Mane against the mistake of leaving.

Speaking to BT Sport, Gerrard said: ‘[Mohamed] Salah has already said he will be there next year, I know there is a bit of noise around Mane.

“But why would you want to leave this Liverpool team because you know they are going to be competitive at the end of the season?”

It may be, but Mane has his heart set on a new chapter. And as one door closes, another opens for his club. Here they can spend money again or look internally at their offer to make sure his departure doesn’t derail their ambitions.

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