Sadio Mane: I will find it hard to leave Liverpool during the title race

The Liverpool signing addresses his emotions ahead of his departure to the Africa Cup of Nations

Sadio Mane is confident that Liverpool can cope in the winger’s absence as the summer signing prepares to jet off to the Africa Cup of Nations.

The Senegal international has been a big influence on Liverpool’s Premier League title bid this season after a return of nine goals and four assists in 19 appearances in the current campaign.

Mane moved to Liverpool in a £34m deal from their Premier League rivals Southampton in the summer transfer window.

The 24-year-old signed off with a goal ahead of his departure to Africa after the forward netted Liverpool’s second goal in a 2-2 draw with Sunderland at the Stadium of Light on Monday afternoon.

Mane was at fault for Sunderland’s second equaliser after he handled the ball in Simon Mignolet’s area and Jermain Defoe dispatched the subsequent penalty.

Speaking to the club’s website after their disappointing stalemate at Sunderland, Mane offered an insight into his emotions as he prepares to leave his Liverpool teams for the Africa Cup of Nations.

“We are in good position but now what’s more important is the direction. Everybody knows that and will be ready for the next games,” Mane said.

“It won’t be easy for me to leave because I would like to help them but I think they will understand.

“We have done good work and we have a strong team so it will be no problem, they will do it.”

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