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Sadio Mané: The Prince of Bambaly who became King of Africa

Sadio Mané quickly knew what he wanted to do with his life. From an early age, he took up football. From the streets of his village Bambali to Dakar with Génération Foot, the Senegalese winger quickly discovered Europe and has been shining there for more than a decade. A look back at the detailed career of Sadio Mané, double winner of the African Player of the Year trophy.

Sadio Mané, the young “villager” who wanted to play football

He could have become an imam like his father. It could have been intended for another profession as well. But very quickly, his admiration for Brazilian legend Ronaldinho and his attachment to El-Hadji Diouf immediately showed him the path to follow. A little later than European children, but at 15, Sadio Mané knew he would become a footballer. It was his most ardent dream and he wanted to give himself the means to achieve it. Bambali’s son also knew he would have to leave his village to achieve this. Direction the capital to try his luck and that even, without the knowledge of his parents. The young man had literally run away, as he says himself. “I fled the village to go to Dakar, without anyone knowing. And a week later, when they were looking for me everywhere, they knew I was in the capital and then took me back to the village. »

M’bour, the bridge between Sadio Mané and the capital to get into the football arena

It is in the capital in Dakar that Sadio Mané landed after his escape from the village. Far too big a city, the young prodigy did not last long and returned very quickly to Bambali. But it was without giving up his dream. In 2009, Sadio Mané traveled to M’bour, the biggest football city in Senegal, to try to afford a new ticket to the capital. Equipped with shorts and damaged shoes, the child of then will try his dream with the navetanes (informal sports practices very popular in Senegal, which take place during the rainy season). It was at this precise moment that he commanded the admiration of certain people who decided to direct him to Génération Foot, the most fashionable Senegalese club at the time.

Sadio Mané discovering local professional football with Génération Foot

Sadio Mané did not play the shy when he arrived at Génération Foot. Very quickly, he began to impose himself and wanted to stand out from the crowd at all costs. 2010-2011 season, a real explosion. Sadio Mané is the great architect of the club for the rise in the Senegalese second division. He is now in the spotlight, and very quickly, his talent will be expatriated. He was spotted by the leaders of FC Metz, a partner club of Génération Foot. He will be transferred to the club in 2011. It is the beginning of an illustrious career in Europe. He will experience French, Austrian and English football and is about to make his debut in Germany.

Generation Foot, the bridge between Sadio Mané and France

Sadio Mané had put himself into orbit with his fine performances on the side of Génération Foot in Dakar. It was in this academy that he really showed his talent. And through a partnership between the Dakar formation and the French club, Sadio Mané was targeted by the Messin club. The young talent of the time landed in Moselle in the Great East of France. It was undoubtedly the beginning of a great story because the Garnets allowed the Senegalese to polish his talent and very quickly climb the ladder towards other horizons.

Sadio Mané and his beginnings in the professional world in France

FC Metz was playing in the French Ligue 2 when Sadio Mané arrived in the 2011-2012 season. Logically, he was assigned to the club’s reserve team in the CFA League upon his arrival. He played 12 games for two goals. He was drafted in the first team and made his debut on January 14, 2012, during a match of the 19th day of Ligue 2 between FC Metz and Bastia. Launched by Dominique Bijotat, it was the start of a great adventure for the Senegalese winger. He finished the season with 19 games for a goal against Guingamp and an assist against Le Havre. The club hit rock bottom this season and descended into the third division.

Half a season more in Lorraine then departure for Salzburg

After his baptism of fire in the professional world, Sadio Mané is also having a second season in France with FC Metz in the third division before leaving for Austria. Sadio Mané only played 4 games, including three in National (French 3rd division) before his departure on August 12, 2012 for Red Bull Salzburg in the Austrian first division. The Garnets received at the time a transfer fee of around 4 million euros. In Salzburg, it’s confirmation for Sadio Mané and the rest of the story, we know it quite well. Southampton for elevation and Liverpool for supremacy.

Sadio Mané, a fanfare debut for his first season in Austria

During the 2012-2013 season, Sadio Mané made a triumphant entry into the Austrian Bundesliga. Arrived from Metz for only 4 million euros, he proved that he was worth much more. In the league, he scored a whopping 16 goals and 8 assists in 26 games. He has notably scored two doubles and two hat-tricks this season. For the same exercise, he had scored three goals in three Austrian Cup appearances. In all, he scored 19 times in 29 games in his very first season for Red Bull. His second season was much more prolific in terms of goals.

Sadio Mané and his second exercise in Austria

During the 2013-2014 financial year, Sadio Mané had shown himself a little more with the club. He made his debut in the preliminaries of the UEFA Champions League and subsequently participated in the Europa League, his very first European competition. In the Bundesliga this season, he had managed to score 13 goals and 12 assists in 33 outings. In the Austrian Cup, it was 5 goals in 4 appearances. It also participates in the Europa League. He scored 4 goals and 2 assists in 9 games. His season consisted of 50 games played for 23 goals and 15 assists. He started the 2014 – 2015 season with the club and already had 8 appearances for 3 goals and 5 assists before his flight to Southampton in England.

A hat-trick in three minutes for his first season in the Premier League

This is undoubtedly what catches the most attention during the passage of Sadio Mané in Southampton. It was during the 2014 – 2015 season. When he had just joined the club, Sadio Mané entered his name in the annals. Against Aston Villa on May 16, 2015, he scored the fastest hat-trick in football history. In exactly two minutes and 56 seconds, he had crucified the Villans with three goals scored in the 13th, 14th and 16th minute of play before delivering an assist on his last goal. Victory 6-1. It is undoubtedly a benchmark match in his career, the match that made him famous. This season he has played 30 Premier League games for 11 goals.

A more successful second season and the departure for Liverpool

The following season, Sadio Mané continued his momentum in the English top flight. He has again planted 11 goals and 7 assists in his 37 league appearances this season. He had also played one game in the FA Cup, two games for three goals in the English League Cup, and three games in UEFA Europa League qualification for one goal. In all, it’s 43 games for 15 goals and 8 assists in all competitions this season. This is undoubtedly what caught the eye of Liverpool who had given themselves the means to recruit this player who will later be part of the history of the club forever.

A successful first season with Liverpool

The 2016-2017 season marked Sadio Mané’s debut with Liverpool. Bought in Southampton against 41 million euros, he was able to assert the price of his transfer. During his first exercise, he had scored 13 goals and 5 assists in 27 Premier League games. The following season, he also scored 10 goals and 7 assists in 29 appearances. But this season was special since the native of Bambali had just broken the house for his very first season in the UEFA Champions League.

Stunning debut in the UEFA Champions League

In the 2017-2018 season, Sadio Mané made his debut in the UEFA Champions League. And the least we can say, he was brilliant. This season, the Mersey club had reached the final of the competition which they lost 3-1 against Real Madrid. The only goal of the English club was scored by the Senegalese. In all, it was 10 goals and one assist for him in 11 games played. All the seasons that followed, Sadio Mané did not miss the competition and always scored a minimum of two goals each time.

A satisfactory record for Sadio Mané with Liverpool

Sadio Mané leaves Liverpool with an impressive record. He helped the club lift several trophies. But his personal contribution is considerable. He played 269 games for the club. He scored 120 goals and provided 38 assists in six seasons. Along with Egyptian Mohamed Salah and Brazilian Roberto Firmino, he has formed one of the most prolific attacking trios in Europe in recent years. Today, the greatest African player of the moment evolves on the side of Bayern Munich. He was transferred this summer against 32 million euros. He already has one goal and one assist in one game.

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