Reports: Liverpool star set to make surprise move to Serie A
What's the story?
Liverpool F.C. and their manager Jurgen Klopp have been intensely tied into an endless transfer saga with FC Barcelona over midfielder Philippe Coutinho's seemingly imminent move to the Catalan side.
Coutinho is considered by many to be the best replacement for a departing Neymar.
However, reports from the Daily Express suggest that losing Coutinho might not be the only issue on Klopp's hands, as Serie A giants have supposedly been monitoring Liverpool star Sadio Mane and are planning to launch a bid for the Senegalese international in the ballpark of £35 million.
In case you didn't know...
Sadio Mane made 29 appearances and scored 13 goals in all competitions for Liverpool last season, until he was ruled out towards the end of the season after suffering a ligament injury.
The 25-year old completed his rehabilitation and made a return for The Reds earlier this week, in a friendly game against Hertha Berlin, which Liverpool comfortably won 3-0.
Meanwhile, Inter Milan, backed by rich new Chinese owners, have been making the most of the transfer window.
They already signed defender Milan Skriniar from Sampdoria, striker Facundo Colidio from Boca, midfielder Borja Valero from Fiorentina and shot-stopper Daniele Padelli on a free transfer from Torino.
Despite these signings, Inter Milan are inclined towards recruiting a solid, world-class attacker that they see in Mane and are ready to launch a bid for the player.
Heart of the matter
Jurgen Klopp is currently invested in a battle to keep Philippe Coutinho at Anfield - a battle he seems likely to lose. The German is now allegedly plagued by the possibility of losing yet another crucial cog in his well-oiled machine.
Inter Milan have claimed to be interested in Mane for quite some time now and are mulling an offer to lure the midfielder to Italy, since the midfielder has recovered from his injury.
The Liverpool hierarchy will be reluctant to let Mane go, having bought him from Southampton only a year ago, for £34 million.
The 25-year old impressed in his debut season at Anfield, and the Liverpool fans will hope to see him again this season, as Liverpool will attempt to mount yet another challenge for the premier league trophy.
Liverpool finished 4th in the 2016-17 season and will hope to use that momentum to do even better this season. In order to do that, Jurgen Klopp will have to keep a firm grip on his war horses.
With Coutinho almost gone, it will be critical for Liverpool to retain Mane at all costs. If not, they might as well bid farewell to their hopes for the new season.