Montreal Impact midfielder Victor Wanyama has revealed Sadio Mane felt Southampton players did not want to pass to him during their time at the club.
The two African footballers were part of Mauricio Pochettino’s side at St Mary’s Stadium and the Kenyan skipper has revealed how the Senegalese forward approached him for a deal that would have helped him score more goals.
Mane and Wanyama left the Saints in 2016 for Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur respectively.
“We were like a family under one father [Mauricio] Pochettino but I and Mane forged a bigger brotherhood bond but [Morgan] Schneiderlin was also a great friend,” Wanyama told Madgoat TV.
“At one point, Mane approached me and told me ‘hi man, these guys do not want to pass the ball to me, can the two of us play closely. They do not want me to score.’ I reluctantly agreed and anytime I got the ball I would pass it to him though.
“I wanted to treat him right since he is a good and nice guy.”
Wanyama also spoke about a common difficulty the two went through while serving the Hampshire club.
“There was a time we had a rough time together especially because of suspensions. My suspension came mostly from the hard tackles I applied trying to help the team,” he explained.
The former AFC Leopards and Beerschot star also gave an account of how Pochetteino came, watched him and signed him.
“Pochettino came and watched me in one of the games when we were playing against Motherwell. He came on a day I was playing as a centre-back due to injuries that had hit the team then,” added Wanyama.
“After the game, he pulled me aside and told me ‘how are you playing at centre-back and we thought you are a midfielder?’ but I replied that I am a midfielder indeed.
“Pochettino told me he was coming to buy me to help Southampton who were seriously struggling.”
After serving Southampton from 2013-16, the Harambee Stars skipper decided to move to London but confirmed the fond memories he enjoyed at the club.
“I was happy with the motivation given at my first moment at Southampton especially the assurance that we can beat any team,” he concluded.
“There was a time I lost everything in my house through burglary and the support I got from the player was very amazing and I recovered quite quickly due to the reaction of players.
“My exit from Southampton to Spurs was as emotional as the exit from Celtic. But again, every club that I have played for I was happy with the oneness the players and everyone at the clubs showed. They were like families.”