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Sadio Mane Reportedly 'Fuming' over False Quotes on Liverpool Title Challenge

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistJanuary 16, 2019

Liverpool's Senegalese striker Sadio Mane runs with the ball during the English Premier League football match between Liverpool and Arsenal at Anfield in Liverpool, north west England on December 29, 2018. (Photo by Paul ELLIS / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or 'live' services. Online in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No video emulation. Social media in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No use in betting publications, games or single club/league/player publications. /         (Photo credit should read PAUL ELLIS/AFP/Getty Images)
PAUL ELLIS/Getty Images

Sadio Mane is reportedly angry after he was falsely quoted as saying Liverpool are "not a team of chokers" and that he is "sure" they will win the Premier League this season.

Cliff Hayes in The Sun reported Mane's assertions that Liverpool "are determined to show we are the best team in the league," which the Senegalese supposedly said at last week's African Player of the Year awards.

Per James Pearce in the Liverpool Echo, though, Mane is "fuming," with the 26-year-old "adamant that he said no such thing."

Jurgen Klopp's Reds hold a four-point lead over Manchester City at the top of the Premier League with 16 matches of the 2018-19 campaign remaining.

Premier League @premierleague

22/38 #PL https://t.co/dUKWLxmP7e

The Citizens are defending champions after registering a record points tally last term and are effectively the only other contenders for the title.

Klopp and his team have been almost universally cautious in making any long-term predictions about their season.

Only Dejan Lovren has broken rank, speculating before Christmas that Liverpool could go the whole season unbeaten. They subsequently lost to City at the beginning of January. 

The Reds' lack of hubris is a smart tactic.

They may be the second most successful team in English football history, boasting 18 league titles—only Manchester United have more with 20—but the last time they were champions was back in 1990.

They have come close since, most recently in 2013-14, when they dropped four points in their final three games to finish two points behind champions City.

Indeed, in recent Premier League history, they are the only side to have been top at Christmas and not gone on to win the league:

B/R Football @brfootball

Last 10 Premier League leaders at Christmas: —Chelsea 🏆 —Manchester United 🏆 —Manchester City 🏆 —Manchester United 🏆 —Liverpool ❌ —Chelsea 🏆 —Leicester City 🏆 —Chelsea 🏆 —Manchester City 🏆 —Liverpool ❓ https://t.co/sG9WRbYdMb

That is a legacy they must throw off this season if they are to finally break their title drought. 

Liverpool face Palace on Saturday, one of the sides who scuppered their chances of the title in 2014 when they came back from 3-0 down to claim a point at Selhurst Park.  

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