Trevor Sinclair Did. Sort Of
The former QPR, West Ham, and Manchester City winger and now pundit, was chatting on TalkSport about the reasons for the Senegal International’s reasons for leaving.
He has apparently ‘opined’, according to Goal.com and that’s a good word to use;
Opine: to express an opinion, according to the Cambridge Dictionary.
Well, I can’t find any words to back up the comment. Not from Sadio Mané. Not from Jurgen Klopp, the two people at the center of this story. Nor can I find any veracity to this statement from those who may have been around the situation. But should we have to? Do we need to?
What Are The Reasons For The Sale, According To Trevor?
This all seems to boil down to;
Sadio Mané wasn’t as lauded on the pitch as Virgil Van Dijk or Mo Salah. Well, Van Dijk was seen as a big piece of the success puzzle when he was purchased, he bosses the defense, and Liverpool struggled, relative to their own recent success, in the 2020/21 season he was injured. So that is a big feature of the team, but he is a defender.
Salah? Co-holder of the Premiership Golden Boot this season but a different kind of goalscorer, he takes more of the ball to score and runs with the ball more, Mané, like Jotta or Firmino, is a player more involved in moves and getting on the end of them.
Perhaps Salah gets more attention because, like recent signing Luis Diaz, he seems more swashbuckling, but Liverpool fans I know don’t place one over the other.
And there is no evidence I can see that this is an issue at the club.
Klopp apparently denigrated the African Cup Of Nations too, which Sinclair cited as a possible reason Mané left, in his opinion; he said, as reported again by goal.com;
‘Mane is a man of principles, you’ve seen him buy hospitals, buy schools, and all the rest of it in his hometown of Senegal and it’s for these reasons I feel Sadio Mane’s thought, you know what, I’m going, I’m leaving the club.’
And Sinclair is correct that Mané is a man who has donated much to his home country and home village of Bambali, as was reported in The Big Issue – I just can’t really see the reporting to agree with the last few words of Sinclair’s comment.
Clearly, the Africa Cup Of Nations is a very important competition for the now Bayern Munich striker Mané and he helped his country win it for the first time this year. Yes, Klopp did call the tournament ‘little’, but later clarified the comment by calling it ironic, because the competition isn’t small considering the effect it has on the Liverpool team – as reported by Sky Sports, he said;
‘…and I didn’t mean a little tournament, just like you say it when there’s still a tournament. It’s ironic. There’s still a tournament. A big one. We lose our best players to the Africa Cup of Nations…I’m not a native speaker, but if you want to understand me wrong you can do that all the time. I know that I would never think like this.’
This is not ideal but in some ways expected in modern high finance football when a manager is focused on the games to play and cups to win domestically and in Europe. That isn’t to excuse a comment of this nature at all, but it may have come from a place of competitive concern.
We don’t know though, do we? We can only opine…
The Third Reason Sinclair Gave Was…
The Contract Issue
Sinclair is right, Liverpool could and should have renegotiated Sadio Mané’s contract earlier. But it did have another year to run and they left the same negotiation period to another Liverpool player recently.
But the Senegal striker had been told, according to reports, that it may take longer to complete a contract than his Egyptian teammate. As Anfieldwatch.co.uk reported;
‘As it stands, Liverpool have told Mane that he will be waiting until the summer before he gets an offer on a new contract.’
and this may have had an impact, but again, I’m only opining.
It Isn’t Sinclair’s Fault
He said something on TalkSport which was a think piece. His views. That is all, the words bear the hallmark of opinion. But that isn’t enough now, there are so many places to fill, so many places to write, so many places to get your opinion.
At this point, I must point out that I understand;
I Am One Of Those People Writing
but at least this piece is more about opinion and how it can be taken as ‘fact’.
That word is in speech marks because there is no such thing as fact now if there ever was. In a world of social media where someone can make a comment and it be accepted by algorithmic supporters so that it is perceived as ‘fact’, in a world where the government just has to announce a policy for it to be accepted by people that it’s taking place, in a time when ‘news’ programs no longer ask you ‘what do you think?’ but ‘how do you feel?’, opinion has replaced ‘fact’.
And that’s what we have here, opinion used as fact by people who run off with it and created their opinion/fact. That opinion/fact appears to be mostly based on the first opinion – Mané didn’t feel valued.
But then as a Liverpool fan, I would take that opinion and add my views to make it my opinion/fact, wouldn’t I?
What Do We Know?
Sadio Mané has left Liverpool FC to join Bayern Munich for £35 million for a 3-year contract and he told LFC website, as reported by the BBC;
‘It is really strange to no longer be a Liverpool player but I had an unbelievable time. I am going to be Liverpool’s number one fan forever. ‘
And that’s a quote. But not a ‘fact’…