Mane names controversial ex-Red ace as his idol in football

Mane names controversial ex-Red ace as his idol in football

Sadio Mane has names controversial former Liverpool forward El-Hadji Diouf as his idol in football when growing up in the rural village of Bambali in southwest Senegal.

Mane was 10 years old when Salif Diao and Diouf inspired Senegal to a stunning quarter-final showing at the 2002 World Cup saw them move to Anfield with the Reds cough out £10m for one time African Player of the year.

The 37-year-old notched six goals in 79 appearances for Liverpool in two season, which marred by controversial incidents with

he most famous of which was when he spat at a supporter during a UEFA Cup game against Celtic.

Mane becomes third Senegal to play for the Champions League finalist as he speaks to Bleacher Report he said: “When I was young, I had lots of favourite footballers, but Ronaldinho was my real favourite, along with El-Hadji Diouf from Senegal. They really inspired me.

“Those two players were examples for me as a footballer. They were skilful players and good dribblers who beat their opponents easily.

“I was a very good dribbler as a young player, but now that I’ve got more experience, there are some useless things that I don’t do anymore.

“It’s all about making and scoring goals for the team, like my idols did when they were at the peak of their powers.

Mane is the leading goalscorer in the Premier League this season with four and hoping to extend that record against Tottenham Hotspurs at Wembley on Saturday lunchtime.

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