Momo Sissoko says Zinedine Zidane wants Sadio Mane and Paul Pogba at Real Madrid

Karl Matchett
Sadio Mane celebrates his goal to put Liverpool ahead: Getty

Former Liverpool midfielder Momo Sissoko isn’t sure that Mohamed Salah will remain with the Reds over the long term—but feels team-mate Sadio Mane is a more likely option for Real Madrid to target.

Sissoko was a powerful central ball-winner at Anfield during the reign of Rafa Benitez, and also played in Spain with Valencia and, later in his career, Levante.

Discussing the Reds and the future of his fellow Africans, the ex-Mali international suggested that Zinedine Zidane’s long-standing interest in Mane, along with his particular playing style, makes him the more likely candidate for a move to the Santiago Bernabeu.

“No, I see Sadio Mane more [likely], because he has the characteristics that Zidane wants, he rates him highly,” Sissoko told EuropaCalcio.

“I think Mane will go to Real Madrid.”

Regardless of whether either of them are realistic targets for Madrid, Sissoko feels the transfer work and planning over the past few years at the club means their absence wouldn’t be devastating.

“I don’t know if Salah will stay at Liverpool. If he goes, his exit could be something good for Liverpool.

“The club is very intelligent and they’ll already know how to replace him; there are young players who are very strong and who are already ready to play with the Reds and show the best of their ability.”

Sissoko, who left Liverpool for Juventus in 2008, was also asked about the future of Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba.

The midfielder has also been linked with Real, but has barely featured this season due to injuries.

Paul Pogba of Manchester United (Manchester United via Getty Images)

“I know Zidane wants [Pogba] in Real Madrid, but he’d like to go back to Juventus,” Sissoko continued.

“These are situations which don’t just depend on Pogba but also Manchester United.

“He should find a team which will make him feel important to rediscover his best level.”

United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has continually said he wishes to keep Pogba for next season—much as is expected to be the case with Salah and Mane at Liverpool.

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