There aren’t many pundits better qualified to talk about what it takes to stop an elite winger than Manchester United legend Gary Neville.
And on Monday Night Football, 15/04, 7:40pm, Neville and his co-pundit Jamie Carragher went into depth about just how good the current wide talent in the league is, focusing on Liverpool duo Sadio and Mo Salah and Manchester City ace Raheem Sterling.
Carragher asked Neville whether that crop were better than his former team-mates David Beckham and Ryan Giggs and while he stopped short of saying a definite yes, he revealed that he thinks they’re more dangerous in terms of goal threat, saying: “They’re the most devastating, when it comes to goalscoring.
“I used to think when a wide player got a chance they wouldn’t take it but these guys (Salah, Mane and Sterling) are finishers. We are seeing absolute devastation. Barcelona and Real Madrid would want all of them tomorrow. They’re outstanding.”
The game has obviously changed in terms of the roles wingers play; Beckham and Giggs used to play on their natural flanks, going down the outside and crossing the ball in.
Salah and Mane play on the reverse sides, with an emphasis on bursting from wide towards the centre of the penalty area but their goal return is undoubtedly sensational.
Neville may not want to say that the Reds pair are better than his own friends and team-mates, but the discussion is certainly a valid one and if Mane and Salah are Premier League winners come the end of the season, that would serve to elevate their status as well.