Monday 21 October 2019

Jurgen Klopp: It will take 15 years for Mo Salah to match Cristiano Ronaldo

Liverpool's Mohamed Salah with his Golden Boot award (Dave Thompson/PA)
Liverpool's Mohamed Salah with his Golden Boot award (Dave Thompson/PA)

Chris Bascombe

Jurgen Klopp says Mohamed Salah will have to repeat this season’s heroics “for the next 15 years” to match the achievements of Cristiano Ronaldo.

Salah and Ronaldo’s performance in the Champions League final may not only determine who wins the competition, but also this year’s Ballon d’Or, a personal accolade dominated by the Real Madrid superstar and Lionel Messi.

“Mo played a fantastic season but Cristiano has played 15 seasons like this,” said Klopp. “He has scored something like 47,000 goals – crazy numbers.

“Why should we compare? At the time of Pele nobody compared Pele to other players and asked, ‘Is he as good as him?’

“Now we have Messi and Ronaldo. They have dominated football for a few years and there are so many other good players.

“Messi and Ronaldo are in the final moment very often in the right position to score a goal and that’s the most difficult thing to do in the world. That’s why they are where they are. The Ballon d’Or is always between them. It’s deserved. When they stop playing football we’ll miss them, 100 per cent.”

Whatever the outcome, Klopp will not be compromising his team’s attacking ideals. “If I was to ask the boys now, ‘What do you want to do in this game?’ They would say ‘What we always did’,” he said. “You try to create a plan to deny the qualities of an opponent, but you also have to bring through your own qualities.”

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