Monday Jul 26, 2021. 11:00
Senegalese star Sadio Mane says he is feeling refreshed as he looks to regain his best form for English giants Liverpool FC in the 2021/22 season.
The world-class winger endured a disappointing 2020/21 campaign in which he netted just 16 goals across all competitions as he failed to lived up to his own high standards.
Mane benefitted from an extended break and marked his first friendly appearance of Liverpool’s ongoing pre-season camp in Austria with a goal against Germany’s Stuttgart on July 20.
“Yeah, sure,” Mane told the club’s official website, when asked if he is feeling in better shape than this time last year.
“I think it’s always important as a player to have a break because I can say since I came to Liverpool this was the first time I have had four weeks or more holidays, so I think that sometimes helps a lot.
“I could see from day one that everybody was looking sharp, which for me was unbelievable! I am not complaining about having one week or two weeks’ holiday, but I think it’s always extra [helpful] for us to have this long period of holiday.”
The 2018/19 Premier League Golden Boot award winner went back home during the off-season where he made headlines around the world after it was announced that he had spent upward of £450,000 to build a hospital in his native village, Bambaly, in Senegal.
Mane, who finished fourth for the 2019 Ballon d’Or, and in the award for the Best FIFA Men’s Player he ranked fifth in 2019 and fourth in 2020, has detailed the physical and mental freshness that is fuelling his preparations for the new campaign.
“At the same time we have been working in individual training [during the summer], which is also important because you could see from day one that everybody was looking sharp and ready to go for the new season,” he continued.
“To be honest, everybody, and myself for sure, feels more ready. I always say tiredness is here [in the head] and obviously you have to be mentally strong to cope with it, but at the same time I think resting is the best [thing].
“I think now we have all rested properly so this is another advantage for us. We are looking to be ready for the season now.”