Sadio Mané issues fresh Liverpool transfer update as £30m ‘new Neymar’ wants Anfield move

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Welcome to the Liverpool.com daily Media Digest. From transfers to tweets, it can be hard to keep up with everything going on in the Anfield sphere. Credible, incredible and anything in between: we round it all up in one place here, taking a sideways look at the day’s media goings-on from around the world.

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Liverpool could raid Leeds twice

Reported Liverpool transfer interest in Raphinha is long-standing. The situation surrounding Sadio Mané is only likely to accelerate these rumours. But according to the Sunday People (via the Paisley Gates), Elland Road may have to brace for a double swoop.

As well as the Brazilian, Liverpool are said to want to add Kalvin Phillips to the ranks. With Aurélien Tchouaméni looking likely to choose Real Madrid, FSG will still be in the market for a defensive-minded midfielder, and the Englishman could fit the bill.

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Stylistically, it makes a reasonable amount of sense. Phillips could competently cover Fabinho in the number six role, but also has experience further forward. He is used to a very high-intensity game. Multiple key Liverpool boxes are ticked.

Financially, however, this seems like a non-starter for FSG. The report estimates that a double transfer swoop would set Liverpool back to the tune of £120m. One of the pair may well be targeted, but it would be a shock to see both at Anfield.

Mané speaks again

Earlier this week, Mané upset a lot of Liverpool fans with comments he made in a press conference while away on international duty. He appeared to suggest that ‘60-70 per cent’ of people in Senegal wanted him to leave the club, saying he would ‘do what they want’.

Last night, he let his football do the talking — for the most part. He scored a hattrick for Senegal in a 3-1 win over Benin in Africa Cup of Nations qualifying, becoming the country’s outright top scorer in the process.

However, he still had something to say about Liverpool after the match. In a bid to clarify his earlier comments, he said:

“I spoke yesterday while joking with a bit of humour and it was everywhere.

“I think we’ll stop there. Liverpool is a club I respect a lot. The fans adopted me since day one. Regarding the future, we’ll see.”

It is good that Mané has sought to repair any damage to his relationship with fans, and this parting remark certainly seems more ambiguous than what has been said previously. However, Liverpool will still surely be braced for a departure, providing an appropriate transfer bid is received.

‘New Neymar’ on the move?

Turn back the clocks six years, and the nickname ‘Gabigol’ is on the lips of every football fan. Only a relatively small subset have seen more than a quick YouTube compilation, but all are unanimous in a desire for their club to sign the Brazilian wonderkid likened to Neymar.

In the end, it was Inter Milan who brought Gabriel Barbosa to Europe. However, the clamour proved premature. Gabigol struggled to settle — a loan to Benfica was even less fruitful than his debut campaign in Italy. He duly returned to Brazil, first via loans and then on a permanent transfer to Flamengo.

No longer a bright young talent, and free of the Neymar comparisons, a 25-year-old Gabriel Barbosa is rebuilding his reputation in his own right. In fact, late last year, 90Min claimed that European clubs were ready to give him another chance, with West Ham interested in a transfer worth £30m.

But in 2019 quotes recently resurfaced by Hammers News, Gabigol expressed his admiration for Liverpool, stating that it is a team everyone wants to play for. That status has only been cemented in the last three years.

West Ham are still very much in need of a new striker, but Liverpool could be in the same boat if Mané leaves. In that scenario, there would only be one winner of the transfer race.



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