The public understanding of brilliance has a predictable pattern. Second, we are surprised by it, usually in the wake of an eye-catching demonstration. The level of mastery is almost impossible to grasp, and its sudden appearance always takes us unaware. Then, we are in awe of it until the shock wears off, but awe is an exhausting state, both physically and mentally, and so it becomes unsustainable in time, and we get used to it.
The presence of some people is unmistakable, but the way football is perceived is progressively as one approach to the other, with the players who make up that approach less distinct individuals than bits, and this is particularly true in the decline of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.
Unfortunately, the upshot of this is that, years down the line, the heft of his legacy within the Premier League might very well become the subject of debate. Even right now, to weigh him up against some of the finest Africans historically in the division is problematic, despite the fact that he has, for all intents and purposes, outperformed the vast majority of them on the pitch. It seems then that Mane is doomed to exist in a crevice of the mind, universally acknowledged but not enough of an individualist that he consistently gets the acclaim he truly deserves from the wider public.