Jurgen Klopp clarifies Mohamed Salah return plan after criticism from Egypt boss

Jurgen Klopp has defended the decision for Mohamed Salah to return to Liverpool for treatment on a hamstring injury he suffered at the Africa Cup of Nations.

Salah was initially only expected to miss a maximum of two games before further checks on the injury revealed he could be sidelined for several weeks, and it was then decided that the Egyptian winger would return to Liverpool for treatment.

Should he recover well, Salah would hopefully return to AFCON in the later stages if Egypt can advance through the tournament.

Leaving the Egypt camp has not gone down well in Salah’s homeland and he has been widely accused of abandoning his country and prioritising his club – something which was knocked back by Liverpool assistant Pep Lijnders earlier this week.

“Egypt and Liverpool both have the same interest, we want Salah fit as soon as possible,” Klopp told beIN SPORTS when asked where Salah’s loyalties lie. “If he stays in Africa and they can’t do the proper treatment, it will just delay everything, especially for Egypt if they go through the tournament.

“We bring him here not because we want to take him away from Egypt but just to offer the best medical treatment. That is all we want.

“It’s all agreed. If Salah is fit and Egypt go to the final, it was always clear, he goes back, 100%. Mo wants that, we want that. We don’t plan with Mo and think we can do a little bit here or there.”


Klopp was the first to publicly reveal the idea for Salah to leave the Egypt camp, sparking frustration from national team boss Rui Vitoria, who accused Klopp of “alarming” fans on the day of a big game.

The Liverpool manager rejected claims he put pressure on Egypt to release Salah and once again challenged those questioning the 31-year-old’s loyalty to his country.

“We are completely honest, and if I said something too early…what I said, I didn’t announce it, I said ‘I think it’s agreed’, that’s what I heard. I have so many things to do and so many things going on around me.

“The rest, some people make something out of it, and if somebody questions the loyalty of Mo Salah they should ask themselves if their loyalty is right, because Mo Salah is definitely the most loyal Egyptian I’ve met in my life.”


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