Sadio Mane has electrified since his summer arrival from Southampton.
He won the fans’ vote for September’s Premier League Player of the Month award after a series of scintillating performances, which has even led to some comparisons to John Barnes.
While these are obviously premature and the Senegalese has a very long way to go until he’s anywhere near the Barnes bracket, it is testament to Mane’s terrific start to life at Anfield.
“Some people say I don’t smile enough. I think that’s wrong. I’m usually smiling and having a laugh in training because I enjoy football,” he told Liverpool’s official magazine, cited in the Echo.
“Ronaldinho always did that and I’ve always tried to copy him. I think footballers have plenty of reasons to smile. We have a great job that everybody would like to have.”
Playing on the right of a front-three, Mane’s injected pace and dynamism into the side and maximised the passing skills of Coutinho, Jordan Henderson and Adam Lallana around him.
He’s already become an integral part of Jurgen Klopp’s first choice starting XI.
Mane’s role is versatile though. He cuts inside and sometimes rotates position with the centre-forward to offer us a running option in behind.
“It’s a system where everybody knows their job. Roberto, Coutinho, Studge, Adam… we know each other’s game.
“It’s become easier for us thanks to working on it and we are enjoying playing this way. Whether I’m starting up front or out wide isn’t really the most important thing.
“The manager says be free and then get into dangerous areas where you can hurt the opposition.”