Mo Salah and Sadio Mane ‘rift’ rubbished in Ronaldo vs Messi comparison

Michael Owen has drawn comparisons between Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane’s relationship with Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo's.

The former Reds striker was talking to BT Sport ahead of Liverpool's second-leg Champions League tie with Villarreal when he said that the competitiveness between the pair was a good thing and any talk of a ‘rift’ is in the past.

The former Real Madrid and Newcastle star said: “These are a pair that people questioned if they got on. If there were spats in the past, but they absolutely look out for each other. They play for each other. The quality in some of their assists and finishes. Liverpool rotate a lot of players but these two are almost always a mainstay.

“They have been for some time, no matter how good anyone is who comes into the squad, they remain. Rivalry is a good thing, Messi wouldn’t be Messi without Ronaldo on this planet. Liverpool wouldn’t be Liverpool without Manchester City in the mix as well! They just stride and chase each other, and I think these two, in particular, are always pushing each other.”

Messi and Ronaldo are regarded as some of the finest footballers to ever play and some put their record-smashing careers down to the fact they have always tried to outdo each other. Mane and Salah, meanwhile. work in perfect tandem with the Reds pair making up two of the attacking trio that's made Jurgen Klopp’s side so deadly in recent years.

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In February the pair faced off in the African Cup of Nations. After the competition, Mane, who lead Senegal to victory in the competition, spoke about the pact of silence between him and his Liverpool team-mate.

As Senegal and Egypt, their respective nations, played the final in Cameroon, it was Mane’s winning penalty in the shootout that led his nation to their first-ever AFCON title.

And Mane spoke about the pair’s relationship following his side’s win. “Me and Mo Salah don’t even talk about it,” he told the Que Golazo YouTube Channel. “I think that I’m still thinking about my African Cup, but it’s also an important game that means a lot to me and my people.

“If we can qualify – and we will do everything to do it – it’s very important for me, my team-mates and my country because it’s a really, really massive competition, which is a dream for any football player We will be well prepared for it and do everything possible to win because it’s really important.”

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