Rio Ferdinand names Liverpool FC star who is ‘nightmare’ to face

The Man United legend heaps praise on Liverpool FC forward Sadio Mane

The Sport Review staff
By The Sport Review staff
Liverpool FC star Sadio Mane Photo: The Sport Review

Rio Ferdinand has described Sadio Mane as a defender’s “nightmare” after the African forward starred in Liverpool FC’s 4-0 win over Red Star Belgrade on Wednesday night.

The Senegal international made a brisk start to the Premier League season after Mane scored in Liverpool FC’s opening three Premier League games.

However, the 26-year-old’s goals have dried up in recent months despite Mane continuing to produce influential performances in Jurgen Klopp’s team.

Mane, though, ended his goal drought with Liverpool FC’s fourth goal in a 4-0 victory over Serbian side Red Star Belgrade in the Champions League.

The Senegalese forward gave Red Star captain Filip Stojkovic a torrid night with his direct running and trickery on the left wing during the European clash.

Mane touched the ball 65 times and had four shots on goal in a dominant display, although the former Southampton forward did miss a second-half penalty.

Former Manchester United defender Ferdinand explained why Mane is such a difficult player to defend against.

“Yeah 100 per cent (Mane is very important) and I think that was highlighted at the weekend,” Ferdinand told BT Sport on Wednesday night.

“He missed the game at Huddersfield at the weekend and what he does give them is legs and the willingness to run behind.

“For a defender, that is a nightmare.

“And when he does that, it opens the spaces for the likes of Firmino to drop in.

“And this is what I love about him, snap-shot, bang, goal. No second thoughts – and he’s fantastic.

“I just think that extra bit of dynamism, bit of pace, is something that is a huge threat for defenders, puts them on the back foot and allows space for midfielders.”

Liverpool FC signed Mane in a £34m deal from Southampton in the 2016 summer transfer window, having previously been linked with a move to Manchester United.

Mane proved an instant hit at the Anfield outfit after he scored a sensational goal in a thrilling 4-3 win over Arsenal at The Emirates in the opening game of the 2016-17 Premier League season.

The Senegal star netted 13 times in 29 games in his first season at Anfield to help Klopp’s side secure a top-four finish.

Mane netted 20 times in a season for the first time since leaving Red Bull Salzburg when the Reds forward scored 20 times in 44 games in all competitions.

The Liverpool FC star netted 10 times in the Champions League to help the Reds to reach the final last term.

Mane netted in the final but Liverpool FC ultimately lost 3-1 to La Liga giants Real Madrid.

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