Friday 27 April 2018

Mohamed Salah committed to Liverpool as Jurgen Klopp banishes fears Liverpool will sell

Liverpool's Mohamed Salah. Photo: Reuters/Jason Cairnduff
Liverpool's Mohamed Salah. Photo: Reuters/Jason Cairnduff

Chris Bascombe

Mohamed Salah has underlined his commitment to Liverpool as manager Jurgen Klopp banished fears about the Egyptian superstar’s immediate future being anywhere but Anfield.

Salah’s extraordinary debut season continued as he helped the Merseysiders into the semi-final of the Champions League, and the feelgood factor shows no sign of waning as Klopp shrugged off concerns the 25 year-old will be the subject of a massive transfer bid this summer.

Significantly, Salah has reiterated how settled he is on Merseyside, revealing how Liverpool’s European run has brought it home what it means to play for the club.

“There’s something very special about playing for Liverpool,” Salah told CNN. “The Champions League nights are special for the fans too. You can feel it on the streets.

“The atmosphere in that first game against Manchester City was the first time I had really seen something like that. When we saw the draw, everyone knew it would be a difficult game, but I said we had to be positive and win. That’s what we did.”

Such is the respect between the club, player and Salah’s representative, Ramy Abbas, there has been constant dialogue since his arrival to ensure the flourishing relationship is protected and grows as he continues to thrive in the Premier League.

Liverpool’s owners, Fenway Sports Group, are seeking to build on the existing squad, which means it is inconceivable Salah could follow Philippe Coutinho to La Liga or anywhere else before next season, regardless of the extraordinary fees that dominated the last transfer window.

Although cynics will point to the Coutinho sale, and earlier exits of Raheem Sterling, Luis Suarez and Fernando Torres – all sold under the Boston-based ownership – Liverpool are evidently in the early stages of a new era on and off the park.

Three consecutive wins over Manchester City issued a statement on the progress under Klopp, and Liverpool will take their place in the Champions League semi-finals as peers of Real Madrid, Bayern Munich and Roma rather than plucky underdogs making a surprising appearance.

After the 5-1 aggregate win over City, Liverpool officials head to Nyon for Friday's draw in buoyant mood.

Less encouraging is the situation regarding Emre Can, whose participation for the rest of the season may depend on the club reaching the Champions League final in Kiev at the end of May.

Can has travelled to Germany to be treated on a back injury, accompanied in Frankfurt by a member of Liverpool’s medical staff.

It is possible the 24 year-old has played his final game for the club, especially as Juventus have been awaiting his answer to a contract offer for most of the season.

The fact no deal has been announced has given Liverpool some cause for hope that they can still persuade the midfielder he would be taking an unwise gamble leaving the club now, having contributed so much to the team's rejuvenation under a manager who has aided his development and is eager to prolong their relationship.

Last week, Juventus issued an ultimatum to the player to make a decision by the end of this week, but Can has suggested he will not reveal his intentions until the end of the season.

Online Editors

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