Liverpool should listen to Rio Ferdinand’s Raphinha prediction as Sadio Mane replacement

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It’s been a difficult period for Manchester United fans as they’ve had to watch both of their rivals set new standards in a defining era. Liverpool and Manchester City are at the top of their game, and it doesn’t look like success will dry up anytime soon.

We’ve witnessed the misery of Rio Ferdinand, Gary Neville and Roy Keane on our screens, as the pundits try and remain professional while watching their beloved United dwindle.

However, Liverpool’s boat has been rocked, as Sadio Mane looks set to leave this summer after the Senegal captain expressed his desire to seek a new challenge. Mane will be the first big name to exit Jurgen Klopp’s project ever since the Reds started winning trophies.

But even with a small amount of hope from United fans that Liverpool’s journey could be coming to an end, Ferdinand has predicted Mane’s potential replacement to ‘go up another level’. And that’s because Liverpool are now ramping up their interest in Leeds United star Raphinha, who could be the ideal man to fill Mane’s boots.

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Ferdinand has been a huge fan of Raphinha in the past, and the Brazilian has regularly treated the Premier League to some brilliance since he signed for Leeds in 2020. Ever since he arrived in England, Raphinha has been linked to some of the biggest clubs in Europe, with Barcelona keeping tabs on him this season.

But now it is Liverpool that have increased their interest as they begin to think about life after Mane, and Ferdinand may have predicted more success if the Reds sign the Brazilian. Ferdinand said on his Vibe with Five YouTube channel earlier this year: “Yeah, I like him.

“I like Raphinha, I like the way he plays. I think he had a spell in the season where he was the most decisive player at Leeds. If he went to a better team he would go up a level again. I think there’s more to come from him.”

And with the Brazilian already highly rated, he could fit right into Liverpool’s attack should he make that step up like Ferdinand suggested. Mane will be a big loss for Liverpool, but they still have Mohamed Salah – who announced that he will not be leaving this summer.

And they have Luis Diaz there to cover for Mane at present, with the Colombian being one of their star men ever since completing the January move. It’s a blow for Liverpool, but it’s not time to start panicking just yet.

But Raphinha could be a real possibility for Liverpool, and the Reds are set to use Takumi Minamino as bait and send the star to Elland Road as part of the deal. Liverpool would be oozing flair with a tricky front line, and Raphinha would fit in with Brazilian team-mates Alisson, Fabinho and Roberto Firmino.

And it seems as though Raphinha has been dreaming of this moment too, as he spoke about interest from United and Liverpool back in 2021. “It is difficult to define how I feel when I hear speculation about giant teams like Liverpool and Manchester United interested in signing me,” Raphinha said.

“Man, I grew up watching these teams on television.” We could be seeing Raphinha in a Liverpool shirt in the near future, and with the 25-year-old’s talent, potential and Premier League experience, it could be a perfect match.

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