Sadio Mane has revealed the touching words he said to Mohamed Salah following Sunday night’s AFCON final.
Mane scored the winning penalty in the shootout as Senegal beat Salah’s Egypt side to lift the trophy for the very first time.
There were heart-warming scenes after the final whistle as Mane went over to console his Liverpool team-mate.
Speaking to beIN SPORTS (via Metro), Mane gave an insight into the exchange between the pair.
‘I told him that he remains a very great player and it’s a pleasure to play for the same club,’ he said.
‘I have so much respect for him and he gave everything for his country. Unfortunately, he didn’t win, but that doesn’t mean it’s over for him.
‘I also told him that he still has many things to win, including the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations. They have a young team so maybe they will win it one day.’
Mane had a penalty saved in the seventh minute of the final in Yaounde and neither side was able to find the net in 120 minutes.
In the shootout that followed, Egypt’s Mohamed Abdelmonem and Mohanad Lasheen missed their efforts from 12 yards to allow Mane to score the winning spot-kick.
Salah was down to take Egypt’s fifth penalty, but his chance never arrived and he was left forlorn as his Liverpool team-mate celebrated.
The pair will now return to Anfield to help the Reds in their quest to close the nine-point gap to Manchester City at the top of the Premier League table.
Speaking before Sunday’s final, Jurgen Klopp was hopeful that Salah and Mane would be available to feature against Leicester on Thursday but admitted they would be assessed beforehand.