Mo Salah’s return to England for treatment after picking up an injury at AFCON is a big talking point, and Klopp has now addressed the situation.
Jurgen Klopp has leapt to the defence of the decision for Mohamed Salah to return to Liverpool as the winger recovers from a hamstring injury he suffered while representing Egypt at the Africa Cup of Nations.
There were initial hopes that the forward was withdrawn from his country’s second group stage game against Ghana as a precaution after feeling slight discomfort, but it was later revealed via his agent that the issue was more serious. Salah will spend up to 28 days on the sidelines and his club manager had previously suggested that the 31-year-old would return to Liverpool for treatment.
Should he regain fitness in time and Egypt reach the final stages of the tournament, he is expected to return to represent his nation. Salah registered a goal and an assist in his side’s 2-1 victory over Mozambique in their opening match before Egypt held Ghana to a draw in the game the winger picked up his injury.
Salah watched from the sidelines as Egypt qualified for the knockout rounds in dramatic fashion despite conceding a late equaliser against Cape Verve that led the players on the pitch to believe they were heading home. However, Ghana surrendered a two-goal lead against Mozambique, and it was the Black Stars that headed home instead. There is now a race against time to get Salah fit for both club and country.
Klopp defends Wrong
The Liverpool boss was speaking after his side reached the Carabao Cup final
Liverpool booked a date with Mauricio Pochettino’s Chelsea at Wembley Stadium in February after holding Fulham to a 1-1 draw at Craven Cottage and progressing with a 3-2 aggregate victory. The Reds will be desperate to have Salah at their disposal for the clash against his former employers.
Klopp was forced to explain the reasons behind Salah’s return to Merseyside, with both Egypt and Liverpool’s best interests being considered. There had previously been suggestions of disloyalty on Salah’s part towards Egypt. Klopp said: “I cannot be part of the discussion, Egypt and Liverpool have exactly the same interest. We want Mo Salah fit as quick as possible.
“If he stays there [with his national team] and they can’t do the proper treatment, that will just delay everything, especially for Egypt if they go through the tournament. So we bring him here, not to take him away from Egypt, but to offer the best medical treatment,” the Liverpool boss explained emphatically.
Not happy with the idea that Salah has shown a lack of loyalty towards his nation, Klopp was quick to defend his star player:
If somebody questions the loyalty of Mo Salah, he should ask himself if his loyalty is right, because Mo Salah is the most loyal Egyptian I have ever met.
"If someone questions the loyalty of Mo Salah, because Mo Salah is the most loyal Egyptian I have ever met!"
Jürgen Klopp hits back at the suggestions that the Egyptian King is not loyal to his country!
— beIN SPORTS (@beINSPORTS_EN) January 24, 2024
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