Featured image via Sky Sports
Liverpool’s talisman striker, and Egyptian favourite, Mohamed Salah, has been in tremendous form for the English side in the past few games. After their 5-1 win against Arsenal, Liverpool stumbled both in the Premier League and the FA Cup, suffering two consecutive 2-1 defeats, against Manchester City and Wolves respectively, getting knocked out of the FA Cup in the process.
However, Liverpool have recovered their form, thanks to the efforts of their star players including Mo Salah, cementing their position as league leaders with a seven-point gap over Manchester City (who have a game in hand). The Egyptian King has scored four goals and made two assists in his last five league games, taking his goal tally of the season to 16 league goals to become the top goal scorer of the season so far, two goals ahead of both Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Harry Kane with 14 goals each.
His latest game, against Crystal Palace, was a special one, as he managed to score his 50th Premier League goal, bringing his total tally in the Premier League to 50 goals and 18 assists in just 72 games. This makes Salah the fourth fastest player to reach such a milestone, preceded only by Andy Cole (65 games), Alan Shearer (66), and Ruud Van Nistelrooy (68).
Amid all that praise, there is some negativity as well. This isn’t the first game that Salah has won and scored a penalty. It started with their game against Newcastle in late December when Salah was awarded a controversial penalty. The Newcastle manager slammed the Egyptian King, claiming that this unjust decision took the game away from Newcastle when, from the spot, Salah slotted Liverpool’s second goal of the game.
Their next game was against Arsenal when Salah won yet another penalty. He did the same thing two games later against Brighton when Salah won and scored a penalty. So in the last five league games, Liverpool have been awarded four penalty kicks, three of which were earned and scored by Salah. The critics have been hammering on Salah for such “antics”.
Since the Newcastle game, he has been put under the spotlight by critics, accusing him of diving and fooling the referee to award him a penalty kick. This newly acquired reputation seems to be sticking, as opposition fans are getting furious, reaching the point where some fans boo him on every touch of the ball. Some publications have even claimed that in the FIFA 19 football game, Salah has had a Diver trait added. On the other hand, his teammates and die-hard fans have come to his defence. Many fans believe it’s part of the game, and that defenders should be wary not to come in contact with a player inside the penalty area.
In all cases, we’re glad to see Salah’s smile on the pitch isn’t going away. His performances for Liverpool are concrete proof of the quality player that he is.