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Is Mohamed Salah on the decline at Liverpool?

13 May 2022 | Premier League | Opinion
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Is Mohamed Salah on the decline at Liverpool?
Sbonsi / Shutterstock

Mohamed Salah started the Premier League season in incredible form. The Egyptian winger scored 10 goals in Liverpool’s opening nine league games. He added six assists in that time as Liverpool sprinted out of the gates.

At one point during that run, Salah scored in seven consecutive matches. Salah kept that blistering form going in the English top flight with six more goals and four more assists as Liverpool went into the New Year in second place.

Salah’s call-up to the Egypt national team in January for the Africa Cup of Nations halted some of his form. Yet, it wasn’t the only reason Salah’s second half of the season form has wavered and declined.

Luis Diaz’s arrival at Anfield has shown Salah that every player is replaceable at Liverpool. Much of the talk before Diaz signed centred around Salah’s contract and whether or not Liverpool will break the bank to keep him.

As it stands, it looks like Liverpool won’t break the bank to keep the Egyptian. In fact, there is some debate over whether or not the Reds should retain Sadio Mane and let Salah leave – if he wants. Recent reports indicate that Liverpool are making Mane’s new contract a priority at the behest of Jurgen Klopp.

This writer has always been of the opinion that Mane is more important to the overall team, despite Salah getting the headlines for goals. Liverpool’s disinterest in retaining Salah by restructuring their wage scale has partly been responsible for Salah scoring fewer goals and assists since January.

Fatigue plays a factor in Salah’s form as well, although Jurgen Klopp has managed the Egyptian’s minutes. Of course, some of that could be due to Diaz playing so well in recent months.

It isn’t just Salah’s form that has waned. Diogo Jota has struggled to find the goals since Diaz joined the Reds. It has been Diaz that has been used as the super sub to spark the Reds rather than Jota or Salah. Diaz has also been used more and more from the start.

Salah has scored six goals since returning from the Africa Cup of Nations in the Premier League. He has added four assists in that time, which consists of 14 matches. Still a great return, but not what would have been expected following the great start.

Two of Salah’s last six goals did come against Manchester United at Anfield in the derby. One of his four assists came against Man City in their top of table clash.

Heading into matchday 37, Salah hasn’t scored in four straight games and hasn’t provided an assist in three consecutive matches.

With Salah’s contract up in just over 12 months, it feels like he is at a crossroads. There doesn’t seem to be the fervour by other clubs around Europe to sign Salah like there were a season or two ago.

Real Madrid and Barcelona do not have the money to sign Salah on a transfer. Both clubs have also turned their attention elsewhere. Despite reports in the media, it is unlikely Liverpool will sell Salah this summer unless a deal they simply cannot refuse comes in.

Of course, Salah could still win up to three trophies with Liverpool this season. If the Egyptian can win one, two, or all three of the remaining trophies, interest could spike once more over.

Premier League
OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1
Manchester City 90 37 28 6 3 96 24 72
2
Liverpool 86 36 26 8 2 89 24 65
3
Chelsea 70 36 20 10 6 73 31 42
4
Tottenham 68 37 21 5 11 64 40 24
5
Arsenal 66 36 21 3 12 56 45 11
6
Manchester United 58 37 16 10 11 57 56 1
7
West Ham 56 37 16 8 13 59 48 11
8
Wolverhampton 51 37 15 6 16 37 40 -3
9
Leicester City 48 36 13 9 14 57 57 0
10
Brighton 48 37 11 15 11 39 43 -4
11
Brentford 46 37 13 7 17 47 54 -7
12
Crystal Palace 45 36 10 15 11 47 43 4
13
Aston Villa 44 36 13 5 18 49 50 -1
14
Newcastle United 43 36 11 10 15 40 61 -21
15
Southampton 40 36 9 13 14 41 61 -20
16
Everton 36 36 10 6 20 39 59 -20
17
Leeds United 35 37 8 11 18 40 78 -38
18
Burnley 34 36 7 13 16 32 50 -18
19
Watford 23 37 6 5 26 33 75 -42
20
Norwich City 22 37 5 7 25 23 79 -56

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