'High-flying' Mane back for Liverpool after Senegal title

AP , Friday 11 Feb 2022

Sadio Mane has returned to Liverpool after celebrating Senegal's title in the African Cup of Nations and is set to be in contention for the Premier League match at Burnley on Sunday.

 Sadio Mane
Senegal s forward Sadio Mane poses with the player of the tournament award after winning the Africa Cup of Nations (CAN) 2021 final football match between Senegal and Egypt at Stade d Olembe in Yaounde on February 6, 2022 (AFP)

Mane led Senegal to its first African Cup championship by converting the decisive penalty in a shootout win over Egypt and Liverpool teammate Mohamed Salah in the final. Senegal's Lions of Teranga were feted with a parade and a presidential ceremony in Dakar.

"He will probably emotionally still be high-flying, but physically we have to see, how intense it was for him the last few days,'' Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp said Friday.

Klopp may not need to rush Mane back, however, as Liverpool has plenty of attacking options. New winger Luis Diaz made an impressive debut and Diogo Jota scored both goals in a 2-0 victory over Leicester on Thursday.

Salah came on as a substitute in a win that keeps second-place Liverpool nine points behind Manchester City with a game in hand. Liverpool is also chasing titles in the Champions League, FA Cup and League Cup.

"It's good to have options with the quality the boys have,'' Klopp said.

Mane was expected to train Friday and Klopp said "we make a decision after that, how he feels and all that stuff.''

Burnley is in last place but has games in hand after coronavirus-related postponements earlier in the season.

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