'World-class' Mane is a machine, says Carragher

Cheikhou Kouyate indicated he feels European and South American players are favoured in the Ballon d'Or voting - at Sadio Mane's expense.

Sadio Mane is the "world-class winger" Liverpool have been missing since the days of John Barnes, according to former defender Jamie Carragher.

The Senegal international has scored eight goals in 11 games for Jurgen Klopp’s table-topping side this season, part of a haul of 67 in 134 games since arriving at Anfield from Southampton.

He scored as Liverpool beat Leicester City last time out to extend the team’s winning run at the start of the season to eight games, a result which also saw them pull eight points clear of champions Manchester City.

And the European champions are well placed to go one better than their heroic second-place finish last term – where they tallied a record 97 points – aided by the goalscoring form of Mane and his attacking partners Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah.

"Even after the first couple of games, I said Mane, probably along with Raheem Sterling, was possibly the best left winger in the world,” former Reds defender Carragher told the club’s website.

"I absolutely love him, he's my favourite player at the club. He's brilliant, he's always got a smile on his face, always there, always gets knocked about, gets goals, setting others up.

"He's the one who came in at the very start under Klopp, his first real big signing, and I think ever since then he's just been getting better and better. He's just a machine." 

The Reds are currently on a run of 17 consecutive wins in the Premier League, a streak that reaches back to March of last season when they drew 0-0 at Anfield against Everton.

And Carragher thinks the club are equipped to transform their astonishing form into a first league title win since 1990.

"I always talk about the teams I played in never possibly had, say, a John Barnes, that world-class wide player," he added. "But I think Liverpool have got that now.

"I think that's what's making the difference why they are so good and look in a great position to hopefully go on and win the first Premier League.

"If you start comparing people like Sadio Mane to John Barnes then that shows how well he's doing.