Liverpool's Sadio Mané: "I didn't know Premier League winners got medals"
Liverpool are on firmly on course to lift the Premier League title and Sadio Mané has only just found out that medals are awarded to the winners.
Sadio Mané admits that he had no idea Premier League winners receive a medal for the achievement, with one almost certainly heading his way as Liverpool's march to the title continues. Mané, who has scored more Premier League goals than any other Senegalese player in history, could also become the first player from the country to win the English league.
Sadio Mané's historic Premier League figures
The Liverpool forward has found the net 13 times and set up another six in 24 appearances this season. In total, he has scored 79 Premier League goals during his time with Southampton and the Reds.
Jürgen Klopp's side are 22 points clear at the top of the table with 11 games remaining, putting a first top-flight crown in 30 years firmly within their grasp. But the medal which will come with it is of little interest to African Player of the Year, Mané.
"I heard yesterday that if we win the league, we will have a medal," he told BBC World Service. "I never knew that happened, but I don't care about medals."
Winning the Premier League is extremely difficult, says Mané
After missing out to Manchester City in a thrilling title race last season, Liverpool have made things look easy this time around. Mané, however, insists it has been anything but.
"Easy? Oh, I wish!" he said. "We know the Premier League is the best league in the world and every single game you have to give 100 per cent if you want to win. It's what we always try and I think it's working very well, but we have to keep working hard to get what we want. Our target from the beginning was to win the league, so if we win it, it will be great for the club and for the fans."
Mané has been helping those less fortunate back home, funding projects including a school and a hospital. "If you could see where I come from - a very small village far from the capital, Dakar, it was really tough. But it's part of life and you have to dream and keep going every single day," he explained. "You have to have self-belief, never give up and work hard. I think that's the key. And putting it into your head that you will become something".
With Klopp having brought the Champions League trophy to Anfield, a maiden Premier League title could lead to a statue of the German being built outside the club's home ground. It is an honour Mané believes his manager would deserve.
"For sure I think there will be one because he is a great manager and he is doing very well for the club and the players," he said. "He has his specific way of doing things and he gives his players more responsibility on the pitch which is really important. At the same time, he is very friendly with his players so that is one of his big strengths."
Off to Watford hoping to extend unbeaten run to 45 games
Liverpool head to Watford on Saturday with a chance to increase their lead at the top to 25 points as Manchester City will be taking Aston Villa in the EFL Carabao Cup final on Sunday.
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