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How Liverpool’s trio of Mane, Firmino and Salah compares to football’s greatest tridents

They say that everything in life comes in threes. In football, the best attacks certainly do.

It may have been Pep Guardiola’s revolution in Barcelona that led to the trident becoming a deadly force in modern football, overtaking the duo in the process. Sure, managers tinker with every game, but the trio are here to stay.

For years, Barcelona shone with their deadly MSN connection, namely the heavyweight unit made up of Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar. PSG have tried to build something similar at great expense but have so far fallen incredibly short.

Liverpool boasted one of the best attacking trios in world football before being ripped apart

Liverpool boasted one of the best attacking trios in world football before being ripped apart

Meanwhile, Liverpool managed to put together one of the most powerful three-man teams in football history, although it has been torn apart this week.

That’s because Sadio Mane has left the club for Bayern Munich after expressing his desire for a new challenge. Along with Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino, he helped bring silverware to Anfield and left on good terms as a fan favorite.

But what is statistically the best front three in the sport? sports post takes a look.

Sadio Mane's departure to Bayern Munich ended their trophy-winning spell

Sadio Mane’s departure to Bayern Munich ended their trophy-winning spell

Roberto Firmino, Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane (Liverpool)

105 league games played, 144 goals

In their first season as a trio, they reached the final of the Champions League.

Incredibly, the trident scored 30 goals, 10 each, en route to the blockbuster in Ukraine. That was the most of three teammates in any edition of the tournament.

In the following years, they won the Premier League, the FA Cup, the Carabao Cup and the Club World Cup, as well as the Champions League.

In total, they played 105 league games as an offensive unit, dating back to the 2017-18 campaign. Individually, Salah leads the way, unsurprisingly, with 65 goals and 21 assists. Behind him, the outgoing Mane scored 44 goals and scored another 17.

Firmino, meanwhile, has scored 35 impressive goals and provided 16 assists.

As a trio, they scored 54 league goals together, a key factor behind their success.

In total, Salah, Firmino and Mane played 105 league matches together and scored 144 goals

In total, Salah, Firmino and Mane played 105 league matches together and scored 144 goals

Gareth Bale/Karim Benzema/Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)

69 league games played, 158 goals

This trio has won the Champions League a whopping four times, with each of the stars – Gareth Bale, Karim Benzema and Cristiano Ronaldo – proving equally crucial.

They came as a counterpoint to Barcelona’s formidable MVP and were just as effective. They scored for fun and kept Madrid series winners.

Bale had a modest end to his career at the Bernabeu, which was a great shame given his exploits in his early years there, especially in his first season.

A cup double arrived in his first year, with Bale scoring important goals in both finals.

At their bubbly best, they were untouchable. They won the Copa del Rey in 2013-13, the UEFA Super Cup three times and the FIFA Club World Cup four times.

Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema have won the Champions League four times

Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema have won the Champions League four times

It is memorable that they eliminated LaLiga in 2016/17, but they would have liked more glory in the league.

Their statistics, when broken down, make for fascinating reading.

Ronaldo tops the charts for the trio, with 80 goals and 28 assists. Teammates Benzema and Bale scored 41 and 37 goals respectively.

As for dropping off teammates, both Bale and Benzema have 22 assists each.

In LaLiga, they scored 70 goals together, surpassing Liverpool’s total of three.

Wayne Rooney/Cristiano Ronaldo/Carlos Tevez (Manchester United)

21 league matches played, 40 goals

Manchester United have been blessed with an array of world-class collaborations over the years, but perhaps none come close to the feats of this deadly trio.

What made these stars stand out is that none of them were ever a true number 9 or winger. Instead, they combined beautifully to keep their rivals guessing.

That meant Ronaldo could have fired through the center of the goal with any attack, with Wayne Rooney and Carlos Tevez supporting him.

But just minutes later, they would interchange, injecting a fresh, exciting dynamic.

The results speak for themselves. United won the Premier League twice, once the Champions League, the League Cup and the Club World Cup.

Wayne Rooney, Carlos Tevez (L) and Ronaldo won several awards at Manchester United

Wayne Rooney, Carlos Tevez (L) and Ronaldo won several awards at Manchester United

They also came in with just one win of a second consecutive Premier League and European Cup double, highlighting their dominance both at home and abroad.

But this trio, compared to the others, is held back because of their lack of playing time.

In fact, they only started 21 league games together. In those matches, Ronaldo scored 19 goals, while Rooney and Tevez scored eight and 13 respectively.

To little surprise, Rooney boasted the most assists, with seven.

In total, they scored 23 goals in the highest division.

Lionel Messi/David Villa/Pedro (Barcelona)

28 league matches played, 68 goals

Was this trio part of the best club in the world? This writer thinks so.

Between 2010 and 2012, Barcelona, ​​then led by Pep Guardiola, was at its strongest, breathtaking and all-consuming.

Their tika-taka style was known around the world, but their lead was largely due to the three magicians at the top – Messi, David Villa and Pedro.

Messi often played in the false nine role, allowing him to dictate the game from the depths and ensuring that he remained a threat on goal. Everything revolved around him.

Villa from the left would provide excellent support and Pedro from the right.

Barcelona between 2010 and 2012, led by David Villa, Messi and Pedro, was a fantastic team

Barcelona between 2010 and 2012, led by David Villa, Messi and Pedro, was a fantastic team

Whenever Messi had to miss a game, one of these two would score crucial goals. The final product? A colossal winning machine.

Unfortunately, Villa’s crippling injury caused this band of brothers to shatter, meaning Barcelona stumbled into LaLiga and, shockingly, the Champions League.

A look at the numbers shows that, unsurprisingly, Messi was the standout name.

He scored a total of 39 league goals while playing with his two teammates, as well as racking up 17 assists. Villa scored 12 goals, while Pedro scored with 12 own goals.

In total, they scored 37 league goals together, from 2010/11 to the 2012/13 season.

Lionel Messi/Luis Suarez/Neymar (Barcelona)

67 league matches played, 153 goals

This trio is, both visually and statistically, the best football ever. Each of the three is sensationally good, but together they formed a deadly spear.

There was competition between then, of course. But they were equally selfless, resulting in a goal-fest in countless games, where they would score a hatful.

During their glorious time together in Catalonia, they won two consecutive domestic doubles, the 2014/15 treble and three Copa del Rey trophies in a row.

Led by Messi at the heart of this masterpiece, their connection was seamless. It was as if they were telepathic, such was their ability to predict each other’s ideas.

And on the same wavelength they stabbed a dagger in the hearts of many a party.

But statistically, the best trio on this list, and perhaps ever, were Luis Suarez, Neymar and Messi

But statistically, the best trio on this list, and perhaps ever, were Luis Suarez, Neymar and Messi

Suarez’s role in this triumvirate was to be the target machine, a poacher. But he was also a supporter of an assist, a well-deserved reward for his hard work and pressure.

On the other hand, Neymar brought unpredictability with him. He would enjoy the ball glued to his feet and blind defenders into submission before firing home.

It was his departure that divided the trio, but while they were together, they were unbeatable.

In total, they played 67 LaLiga games together. Messi led the way with 67 goals and 25 assists, while Suarez scored 59 goals and recorded 34 assists as the number 9.

Neymar was also in attendance with 30 goals and 19 assists.

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