Jurgen Klopp is confident Mohamed Salah will sign a new contract at Liverpool and believes only the complexities of a deal for a player of his profile has delayed him committing to the club.
Salah, the Premier League’s top scorer this season, has one full campaign left on his current terms, and speaking on Egyptian television over the weekend, he insisted the issue was in the hands of the club as he wanted to remain at Anfield.
“We are talking,” Klopp said. “Extending a contract for a player like Mo is not a thing you do meeting for a cup of tea in the afternoon and find an agreement. Mo speaks about it when he gets asked about it. What we all want is clear and things like this need time.”
Klopp has not ruled out playing Salah in Milan tonight, despite his team already securing a place in the Champions League knockout stages as group winners. But he will make changes to cope with six more games in December when his squad return from Italy.
He also has one eye on Saturday’s clash with Aston Villa, when he will be reunited with Steven Gerrard in the opposite dugout. “We have to rotate, that is clear,” Klopp said. “The medical department will smash me if I play the same side again. We will try to get fresh legs.”
Klopp said it was “pretty likely” that Divock Origi would start at the San Siro after his last-gasp winner at Wolves on Saturday. “Moan is not the right word, but he knocked on my door and we talked about a few things,” Klopp said.
“But if you are not a starter for Liverpool you can still be a world-class player. It doesn’t mean you are a constant starter for Liverpool, but there are worse things in life.”
The stage is seemingly set for another of Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s great feats – to get AC Milan into the last 16 from an improbable position.
“It is great to have players like him and Mo playing but thank goodness they are not the only two on the pitch or the San Siro would be too big,” Klopp said.
Milan are also likely to field Fikayo Tomori, the England centre-back, who is eyeing a victory after the 3-2 loss at the start of the group.
“Liverpool have a great team but we know we are strong, too,” he said.
AC Milan v Liverpool,
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