Keep our Egyptian King

April 3, 2018

There is no doubt that Liverpool have taken a big step forward this year under Jürgen Klopp. They might not quite be ready to bring the Premier League title back to Anfield, but they have played some stunning football this season, are closing in on second place in the league, and have the chance to reach the Champions League semi-finals.

Klopp has finally got his team playing the way that he wants, and their free-flowing, attack-minded style has won the admiration of neutrals as well as Liverpool fans. The key men in the Klopp revolution have been the deadly trio of forwards – Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mané and Roberto Firmino – and of those, Salah is the most prominent.

The Egyptian star has been in sparkling form in his debut season. Going into the international break, he had 28 goals to his name – four more than last year’s Golden Boot winner Harry Kane. With eight games to go, Salah can break the Premier League Most Goals in a Season record of 31, held jointly by Wayne Rooney, Cristiano Ronaldo and Luis Suárez.

Not only does he convert his chances better than anyone else, but he has also been creating goals for his teammates. He is joint third in the Premier League assists table, having laid on nine goals. Only Kevin De Bruyne and Leroy Sané have contributed more assists. Such has been Salah’s form this year that his presence alone on the team sheet makes Liverpool a tempting proposition for fans who look at the football betting markets.

Salah’s style of play is perfectly suited to the Klopp gameplan. He has the speed to outrun defenders, breaking forward quickly whenever Liverpool win back the ball, and his technical skill enables him to retain possession and link up play effectively. His lethal finishing means that the team get full value for every chance that they create, while he also offers tactical versatility, being equipped to play on the wing and through the middle.

Liverpool will have ambitious plans to strengthen the squad this summer, but player retention must also be part of their plan, and it is essential that the club works hard to keep their Egyptian king at Anfield in the face of likely interest from several top European clubs, including Real Madrid. Having already lost Philippe Coutinho to one of the Spanish giants, Klopp will be determined not to let Salah head to Spain.

On the face of it, there is every reason for the star to stay on at Liverpool. He is loved by Liverpool fans, lauded by pundits and ex-players, and next season he could be part of a team that will be ready to mount a serious challenge for the Premier League title. He is also about to play in a Champions League quarter-final and is pretty much guaranteed Champions League football next year. Still, the club must leave nothing to chance and should do whatever they have to do to keep the Egyptian hotshot on Merseyside.