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Dublin: 5 °C Wednesday 29 January, 2020

'He is a big brother for me' - Senegal team-mate says Mane has helped him adjust to Premier League

Ismaila Sarr has credited the Liverpool star with helping him make the transition from France to England.

Ismaila Sarr and Sadio Mane both represent Senegal.
Ismaila Sarr and Sadio Mane both represent Senegal.

WATFORD WINGER Ismaila Sarr has said that Liverpool star Sadio Mane has helped him adjust to life in the Premier League after his off-season move from Rennes.

Sarr’s Watford side take on Liverpool on Saturday, a game that will see the two Senegal team-mates reunited at Anfield.

Mane’s side have fared far better than Sarr’s in the Premier League this term, with the Reds in first place and Watford propping up the table in last place. 

Sarr has gone through a period of adjustment at Watford, having scored one goal in nine Premier League appearances after his move from Ligue 1.

But the 21-year-old has said his transition from France to England has been made much easier by Sane, a player he considers to be like an older brother. 

“Sadio is talking to me all the time. He advises me to ‘do this, do that’. He is a big brother for me,” Sarr told BBC Sport.

“When I arrived, he sent messages saying welcome to the Premier League, welcome to England and we also talk when we are in the national team.

He gives me tips, I try to execute them and to implement them. ‘If you don’t play, be calm, carry on, do your job, it will be OK’, that is what he says. So I try to do the same.

“If I do not play, no problem. I come and work on the following day.”

Sarr confessed that life at Vicarage Road wasn’t easy at first as he rotated in and out of the Hornets lineup, but he has been buoyed by a recent run of three straight league starts, including his first Premier League goal.

“It is different. It has been difficult for me during the first two months as I was not playing,” Sarr said.

“Now I start playing a little bit and I hope it will be like that from now on.”

Sarr is aware that his side face a daunting task against the league leaders at Anfield on Saturday, but says that the Hornets aren’t going to Merseyside to be spectators.

I think the match will be like any other. We are going to work. We are going there to fight. We are not going there just to watch Sadio play – we will also have to play,” Sarr said.

“I have to show I understood the advice I was given by him. At the end of the match he can give me some more tips.”

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