Pharaoh Salah aims to fire up Reds too

Since joining Liverpool for a then-club record £39 million (S$70 million) from Roma in June, Mohamed Salah has quickly won over the doubters with six goals in 12 appearances.
Since joining Liverpool for a then-club record £39 million (S$70 million) from Roma in June, Mohamed Salah has quickly won over the doubters with six goals in 12 appearances.PHOTO: AFP

LONDON • Fuelled by the adrenaline rush of clinching Egypt's first World Cup berth in 28 years, Mohamed Salah has set his sights on rescuing Liverpool's spluttering Champions League campaign.

After drawing their opening two Champions League matches, the Premier League side have no margin for error when they face Maribor in Slovenia today.

Fortunately for under-pressure Reds manager Jurgen Klopp, he has the man for the big occasion in his forward, Salah.

The 25-year-old was the key figure as Egypt enjoyed a dramatic 2-1 win over Congo last week that booked their return to the World Cup for the first time since 1990.

He sparked wild scenes of celebration across Egypt when he converted the decisive penalty five minutes into stoppage time.

His heroics for Egypt maintained his impressive revival since being sold by Chelsea last year and now he is focused on sparking more jubilant scenes - this time on Merseyside.

Since joining Liverpool for a then-club record £39 million (S$70 million) from Roma in June, Salah has quickly won over the doubters with six goals in 12 appearances.

That fine form is a far cry from his time at Chelsea, where he scored just twice in 19 appearances before being sold by then-manager Jose Mourinho.

Klopp is not the only one dazzled by Salah's potent combination of poise and pace, with Arsenal and France legend Thierry Henry claiming he has the potential to be one of the world's best.

"I don't think it's about proving anything to Mourinho, but proving to the Liverpool fans that you are this guy, that you can be a player like (Philippe) Coutinho," Henry said. "For me, he is special, he has something special. He will be a special player for Liverpool."

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 17, 2017, with the headline 'Pharaoh Salah aims to fire up Reds too'. Print Edition | Subscribe