Football: Liverpool close in on signing Sadio Mane from Southampton

Sadio Mane celebrates after scoring the second goal for Southampton during the Barclays Premier League between Southampton and Manchester City.
Sadio Mane celebrates after scoring the second goal for Southampton during the Barclays Premier League between Southampton and Manchester City.PHOTO: REUTERS

LONDON (THE GUARDIAN) - Sadio Mane will have a medical on Merseyside on Monday as Liverpool close in on the signing of the Southampton forward.

Liverpool have been in negotiations over the 24-year-old for several weeks and hope to complete a deal for around £30 million (S$54.8 million), with officials at St Mary's Stadium initially holding out for closer to £40 million.

The clubs are understood to have agreed a fee in principle for the Senegal forward and Mane will travel to Liverpool for a medical and to finalise personal terms. The transfer should be completed within the next few days.

Mane will join a well-trodden path of players to leave St Mary's for Anfield in recent seasons following Adam Lallana, Dejan Lovren, Nathaniel Clyne and Rickie Lambert.

He was dropped by Ronald Koeman in January amid interest from Manchester United but despite going four months without a goal, ended last season as the team's leading scorer with 15 goals in all competitions.

Jurgen Klopp turned his attention to Mane after the Liverpool manager was frustrated in his attempts to lure his primary target, Mario Gotze , from Bayern Munich.

Southampton have already acted to replace Mane, completing the signing of Norwich's Nathan Redmond on Saturday on a five-year deal for an undisclosed fee believed to be around £10 million.