Liverpool star Salah reacts to Barcelona interest, criticises criteria of best player awards

Ahmed Abd El Rasoul , Sunday 5 Dec 2021

Mohamed Salah said he is happy to hear about interest in him from Barcelona but that he is happy at Liverpool and criticised the criteria upon which individual prizes are awarded.

Liverpool s Mohamed Salah, left, scores past Everton s goalkeeper Jordan Pickford his side s second goal during the English Premier League soccer match between Everton and Liverpool at Goodison Park in Liverpool, England, Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021. AP

"I saw the reports about the reported interest of Barcelona coach Xavi Hernandez and that makes me happy, but I am happy at Liverpool and we will see what happens in the future," Salah said in a long interview with MBC Misr TV channel broadcast on Sunday.

"At the present, being in the English Premier League is better for me. It is the strongest league in the world," he added.

In Sunday's interview, Salah again stressed that he wants to remain at Liverpool, reiterating that his future is now in the club's hands.

"I love adventures and that was the reason behind my return to the Premier League. I didn't play in a satisfactory way with Chelsea and I told myself that I returned here to prove my worth," Salah explained.

In 2014, Salah left Swiss club Basel FC to join Premier League club Chelsea where he spent an unsuccessful short stint, before moving to Italy's Serie A in 2015 to play two years there for Fiorentina and AS Roma respectively.

Since joining the Reds in June 2017, Salah has become one of the world's greatest players, playing a key role in guiding his team to win the Champions League title in the 2018/19 season and the Premier League in the 2019/20 season.

Salah has just wrapped up another impressive year after finishing last season as the top scorer for his team, bagging 31 goals in all competitions, including 22 Premier League goals, falling one strike short of Tottenham's Harry Kane, who won the Golden Boot.

Despite his outstanding performances last season, Salah ended up in seventh place in the Ballon d'Or vote for the best player in the world for 2021 on Monday night, before being revealed as the Golden Foot Award winner later the same day.

"In my mind, I am always the best player in the world," Salah said in the interview that was recorded hours ahead of the Ballon d'Or winner announcement.

“I cannot say that I do not want to win Ballon d’Or or the Best Player of the Year Award by FIFA. Sure I want to win either of them, but if this does not happen there is no problem.”

Salah, who was already included in a ten-man shortlist for the Best Player of the Year Award setto be announced by FIFA in January, stressed that he isn't worried about winning the two titles in the future as he always reaches his goals anyways.

"The criteria of these awards are different. I cannot say that there is intention to harm specific persons on purpose, but I feel that the criteria could be unfair," he added.

Salah said that Bayern Munich's Polish striker Robert Lewandowski and PSG's Argentinean forward Lionel Messi are the main contenders with him now for the best player title.

Egypt's skipper Salah is currently leading the top scorer race in the Premier League this season with 13 goals in 15 appearances so far.

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