Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson sang the praises of summer signing Sadio Mane as he hailed the winger for giving the side “something different” up top.
Mane returned to the Reds' line-up in Tuesday's 5-0 thrashing of Championship side Burton Albion in the EFL Cup. Whilst not getting on the scoresheet himself, Mane bagged two assists as well as playing a part in the second and fourth of Liverpool goals.
The club's skipper spoke of the former Southampton man’s superb skill set that Liverpool fans have “seen in the games at Arsenal and today” but insists the club “can’t just rely on him” with the rest of the “talented players in the squad” needing to perform as well.
Henderson admits that Liverpool “missed him at the weekend” in their defeat to Burnley, with Mane absent through injury, but if he keeps playing the way he is then Henderson expects him to have a “big season.”
The Reds' No.14 added to Liverpoolfc.com: “We can’t just rely on Sadio but he’s been outstanding for us and he gives us something different. Hopefully he can continue to improve and I’m sure he will and have a big season for us.”
The Burton result was important
Henderson was also happy that the players were able to bounce back from the performance against Burnley where everybody involved was “very disappointed at the weekend” after the 2-0 defeat.
Speaking to Sky Sports, the 26-year-old said that “making sure we worked as hard as we possibly can” was one of the big reasons why Liverpool were able to win and “get a good result.”
“It was important to come here and put on a good performance and get a good result because we’ve got a tough game at the weekend,” admitted Henderson.
Mane returned to the starting eleven as Jürgen Klopp’s side progressed through to the third round of the competition thanks to goals from Divock Origi, Roberto Firmino, an own goal, and a brace from Daniel Sturridge.
Liverpool’s £30m summer signing returned quicker than most thought he would from his injury but the Senegal international was himself “very happy” with the “important” win and “great” team performance.
Mane said: “It was important to win and the performance of the team was great. We want to keep going. I want to try to give my best in every game.”