Sadio Mane is “made of granite”, says Jamie Redknapp, with the Liverpool forward proving a point to those who doubted him when he arrived at Anfield by becoming a title-winning “machine”.
A Senegal international was taken to Anfield during the summer of 2016.
Having proved himself on a Premier League stage at Southampton, those on Merseyside headed down a familiar transfer path when luring another top talent away from St Mary’s.
It cost them £34 million ($42m) to get that deal done, with the odd question asked of whether the Reds had been forced to overspend on a player who still had much to prove.
Mane has, however, proved to be another masterstroke by Jurgen Klopp.
A man who secured a share of the Premier League Golden Boot in 2018-19, while adding a further 19 efforts to an impressive haul this season, has found the target on 78 occasions through 163 games in total for Liverpool.
He is a Champions League, Club World Cup and Premier League title winner and a player who is said to be attracting admiring glances from the likes of Barcelona and Real Madrid.
There is little chance of Klopp sanctioning a sale any time soon, with Mane very much one of the main men on Merseyside.
A remarkable level of consistency has been established by the 28-year-old forward, with Redknapp recognising his value to Liverpool’s record-setting cause.
“When they signed him from Southampton there were a few raised eyebrows, but he has just been incredible,” former Reds midfielder Redknapp told Sky Sports.
“He’s made out of granite. He’s so strong, he’s brilliant in the air, he attacks the back post as well as anybody and he can finish off either foot.
“He is just a phenomenal player, great at playing off that side, where he’ll put the ball into the frontman and Roberto Firmino will set him up.
“He is an absolute machine in every single game. He gets scrappy goals, great goals, he doesn’t care, and that’s what sets him apart.”
Liverpool have Mane tied to a contract through to the summer of 2023, but there has been talk of fresh terms being thrashed out with a player who remains integral to Klopp’s plans.