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Liverpool’s Mane a great shout to win Ballon d’Or, with Salah the other standout – Crouch

12:08 GMT+3 30/04/2022
Mane Salah
The former England international explains his thoughts on why the Lion of Teranga could win the prestigious award

Former Liverpool striker Peter Crouch believes Sadio Mane could be the next winner of the Ballon d’Or and will be a contender together with Mohamed Salah, if the Reds finish the season on a high.

The 30-year-old Mane is having a great season, first helping Senegal to lift their maiden Africa Cup of Nations title after defeating Egypt in the final and later returning to Anfield to help the Reds beat Chelsea and clinch the League Cup.

On top of that, Mane has so far contributed 20 goals and three assists for Liverpool in all competitions. According to 41-year-old Crouch, who played for the Reds between 2005 and 2008 and scored 22 goals from 85 appearances, the former Southampton player will be a deserved winner if he goes ahead to claim a quadruple.

“Mane’s a great shout,” the former England striker told Paddy Power as quoted by Mirror. He’s won the Afcon already, and if he goes on to win the Champions League, the Premier League and if Liverpool completes the quadruple then it would almost certainly have to go to a Liverpool player, and then [Mohamed] Salah and Mane are your standouts for it.”

In a recent interview, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp did not rule out Mane as a contender for the 2022 Ballon d’Or.

“If you are not [Leo] Messi or Ronaldo you have to win probably the Champions League, which we didn't do yet so give us a few more weeks and then we will see where we end up.”

“[Mane] can play left, he can play central, both positions world-class,” Klopp said ahead of their Champions League clash against Villarreal.

“He started for us here at Liverpool on the right-wing. Some people in the room will remember his goal at Arsenal when it was his first goal when he cut inside and fired the ball with his left foot into the far corner. Absolutely outstanding, love it.

“There are different ways that Sadio plays and sometimes we want him to drop slightly more, but today we wanted him to stay even more between the centre-halves, keep them away and offer the runs in behind. He has the skill set for it.”

Mane is currently ranked fifth in the Premier League goalscoring charts with a tally of 14 goals this season, and has provided two assists as well.