It’s not often the most important player in arguably the best team in the world starts talking about leaving the club, but that’s what seems to be happening at Anfield right now.
After three stunning seasons at Liverpool Mohamed Salah has begun flirting with a move to Spain’s La Liga, with Barcelona and Real Madrid reportedly in his sights.
During a recent interview with AS, Salah dropped the infamous “you never know what the future holds” line when asked about a potential move to one of the Spanish giants. A few days later, his Egypt international teammate Mohamed Aboutrika revealed that Salah was ‘unhappy’ at Liverpool, although club sources have since denied that is the case.
So what is the deal between club and player?
From an outside perspective, it certainly seems like Salah being unhappy at champions and league leaders Liverpool is an unlikely scenario.
He is the main man in the attack, the talisman and adored by fans and media alike. He’s getting individual accolades as well as winning trophies with the team, under a manager who plays football that suits him and the team is still competing on all fronts.
Real Madrid and Barcelona have also both been linked with moves for younger targets than Salah, with the likes of Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland at the top of their wishlists.
The fee that would likely get Salah away from Liverpool is likely to be in the nine-figure region. But with the former Roma man turning 29 before next season, that fee is incredibly high for someone with not many years left in the prime of their career.
Salah is a player who obviously relies heavily on his physical attributes and it’s only natural that he will start to slow down as he gets older.
Currently his contract with Liverpool is due to expire in 2023, after he renewed his deal in 2018 on improved terms from his original contract. It’s reported that Salah currently earns around £200,000 per-week, which when you consider the wages the top players at other top clubs earn it’s probably a little on the low side.
The most likely scenario is that Salah wants another new contract, to reflect his performances over the years and stature in the world game.
Liverpool will surely offer him a new deal, but whether it matches what Salah wants to earn (reportedly around £300,000 per-week) is unknown.
The Reds could potentially be tempted by a sale though, should an offer of around £100m come in for him. As mentioned, Salah is entering the end of his physical prime now and with how much he relies on those physical attributes it’s possible that we’ll start to see a decline.
As good as he has been, we have already seen that Salah’s numbers have dropped every season since he joined Liverpool – although that isn’t necessarily difficult considering just how good his debut season was.
With so many top, young attackers in the world game right now, Klopp could be tempted to part with his talisman for a crazy fee if a replacement could be found.
The likes of Mbappe, Haaland, Ansu Fati, Jadon Sancho and others have all taken the game by storm in the last 12-18 months and if Liverpool could bring one of those in as a straight replacement for Salah the likelihood is that the squad wouldn’t suffer too much.
It’s a decision to make for both parties and definitely one that will be interesting to keep an eye on. Until then though, Salah will keep scoring goals because that’s just what he does.