Salah's ineligibility for Champions League boosts his Premier League chances

Ahram Online, Saturday 25 Jan 2014

Mohamed Salah won't feature with Chelsea in the Champions League but coach Jose Mourinho says his availability in the Premier League will help him rest other key players

Mohamed Salah
Basel's Mohamed Salah (C) and Chelsea's Cesar Azpilicueta jostle for the ball during their Champions League Group E soccer match at St. Jakob-Park in Basel, 26 November, 2013 (Photo: Reuters)

Mohamed Salah's ineligibility for the European Champions League is likely to boost his chances of featuring with Chelsea in the elite Premier League.

The Egyptian winner, who is on the verge of completing a move to the Blues, won't be able to take part in the Champions League, given that he played with Swiss side Basel in the same competition.

Chelsea coach Jose Mourinho said Salah's availability for the Premier League will help him rest some key players such as Belgian Eden Hazard and Brazilian winger Willian.

"Salah cannot play in the Champions League but he can play in the Premier League so we can rest Hazard or Willian in the Premier League," the Portuguese boss said on Chelsea's official website.

Many Egyptian fans criticised the 21-year-old on social networking sites for opting to join Chelsea rather than Liverpool, who were leading the chance to sign him until their rivals stepped in at the last moment.

They said Salah would have a better chance of playing regularly with Liverpool than Chelsea, whose squad boasts several attacking midfielders including Hazard, Willian and Brazilian Oscar.

Salah, who played a key role in helping Basel win a fourth successive Swiss league title and qualify for the Europa League semis last season, is no stranger to Chelsea, having scored against them in home and away games in the Champions League group stage this term.

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