Why selling Mohamed Salah might be the best option for Jurgen Klopp & Liverpool
Many argue, with strong justification, that Mohamed Salah is currently the best player in world soccer. Indeed, the Egyptian is operating at a level few can match. He is the driving force behind a Liverpool team that is still competing on four fronts this season with Salah contributing no fewer than 28 goals to their campaign so far.
Yet Salah’s future on Merseyside is the subject of much speculation. As things stand, he will become a free agent at the end of the 2022/23 season with Liverpool and Salah still to strike an agreement on an extension. Supporters are growing increasingly nervous that the club’s best player could leave in the near future.
However, if there’s one club that could absorb the departure of a player as good as Salah, it’s Liverpool. In fact, his exit could give them an opportunity to replenish and help keep them at the top of the English and European game. Fans might have to separate sentiment from sporting judgement.
According to widespread reports, Salah is demanding his weekly wage be doubled to around £400,000-a-week to stay at Anfield. This would be in line with market value with the Egyptian undeniably one of the best in the world and certainly one of the best in the Premier League where several performers are paid this much.
Are Liverpool willing to pay Salah this sort of money well into this 30s, though? At 29, the attacker is at the peak of his powers, but like all soccer players there is a question over how he will age. Salah is largely dependent on his physical attributes and so there’s the possibility he could fade quicker than some others.
Liverpool’s structure gives them the freedom to let Salah leave. Klopp has already strengthened his frontline through the addition of Luis Diaz and Diogo Jota in recent times and while Salah has an unparalleled eye for goal among his Liverpool teammates, the identity of Klopp’s team wouldn’t change much without him.
Of course, Liverpool have already navigated a similar scenario under Klopp. It was only a few years ago that they sold Philippe Coutinho, the club’s best player at the time, and used the money to reinvest in other areas of the team. In fact, Coutinho’s transfer to Barcelona allowed Liverpool to accelerate their development under Klopp. They became a much better team as a direct consequence.
This might be a slightly different situation, but Liverpool must consider the need to make difficult decisions to stay at the top. This is something Sir Alex Ferguson did numerous times to keep Manchester United dominant over decades, moving on key players when others might have kept them. Replenishment is always necessary.
While other clubs have spent more than Liverpool in the last decade or so, few have been as well-run as the Anfield outfit. Unemotional decisions have been key to their progression and another one will have to be taken on Salah. It might just be the case that selling the best player in the world will help Liverpool be the best team they can be.