Liverpool's Mohamed Salah, center, leaves the pitch during the English Premier League soccer match between Liverpool and Chelsea at Anfield stadium in Liverpool, England, Thursday, March 4, 2021. AP
Liverpool Coach Jurgen Klopp announced that he had substituted Egyptian Winger Mohamed Salah during the 1-0 loss to Chelsea at the English premier League late on Thursday as the tactician didn't want to take any risks.
Despite losing 1-0 to Chelsea at home, Liverpool boss Klopp decided to call off his team's talented player Salah, who remains the Premier League's leading scorer with 17 goals. This then caused controversy due to the player's reaction when he was sent off.
"I am happy when the boys are disappointed [to come off], that’s not a problem," Klopp said at the post game's press conference.
"I could have changed other players as well, that’s true, but the reason for the substitution was [that] he looked in that moment like he felt the intensity really and I didn’t want to risk him that’s all," the German coach said. "It’s really rare, I have known him for long now and usually Mo looks really surprisingly fresh [all the way] until the end," he added.
"He didn’t look fresh anymore and I thought that’s a sign in our situation, I didn’t want to risk him. That’s it," the Liverpool boss said.
Meanwhile, Salah's agent posted a cryptic message on social media that undoubtedly led to more speculation over the Egyptian star's future at Anfield.
The 28-year-old has performed superbly since joining Liverpool in the 2017 season, achieving great results with the Reds as well as helping the team win two long-elusive titles: the Champions League - in 2018-2019 - and the Premier League - in 2019-2020.
Recent media reports suggested that Salah is on the radar to join one of the La Ligua's top flight teams Barcelona and Real Madrid in the summer transfer window.
Liverpool are currently at 7th place in the English Premier League's teams table with 43 points after playing 27 games so far this season.