New Southampton signing backed to be "future Ballon d'Or winner", says French coach

St Marys Southampton

Southampton swooped to sign Sadio Mane from Red Bull Salzburg on deadline day, and Congo coach Claude Le Roy has backed him for greatness.

After finishing eighth in the Premier League last season, it was quite the summer for Southampton. They lost manager Mauricio Pochettino to Tottenham, whilst star players such as Calum Chambers, Dejan Lovren, Luke Shaw, Adam Lallana and Rickie Lambert all left the club, leaving new boss Ronald Koeman with a big rebuilding job on his hands.

The Dutchman arrived from Feyenoord this summer, and spent some of that huge income on the likes of Fraser Forster, Florin Gardos, Toby Alderweireld, Ryan Bertrand, Dusan Tadic, Graziano Pelle and Shane Long as the Saints replenished their squad.

Belgian defender Alderweireld arrived on loan from Atletico Madrid on deadline day, and he was joined by Red Bull Salzburg winger Sadio Mane just before the window slammed shut. Mane, 22, was highly rated in Austria having hit 45 goals in 87 games for Salzburg, and with impressive displays for Senegal too, there are high hopes for Mane on the South Coast after his £10m switch.

Some felt that the fee was too much for an unproven player outside of Austria, but the winger offers pace and direction that the likes of Lallana and Jay Rodriguez didn't last season.

After going away over the international break with Senegal, Mane was a key part of wins over Egypt and Botswana, and Congo coach Claude Le Roy has reportedly said that Mane "has the potential to be a future African winner of the Ballon D'Or".

That's high praise for the Saints new addition, and after he was handed a work permit, Mane will be able to play in Southampton's game against Swansea City this weekend - and after Le Roy's comments, fans will be desperate to catch a glimpse of their latest addition.

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