It’s taken four world class seasons at Liverpool and now the start of a fifth, but the narrative finally seems to be shifting on Mohamed Salah.
Nobody has ever suggested he isn’t a good player; even a great player. Now, though, pundits and neutral fans are beginning to talk about him as the Premier League’s best. As the game’s best right winger. As a top five player in world football.
He’s been a highly rated player in his time at Anfield, but now he’s getting the respect from the wider footballing world that he’s always gotten from the club’s own fans. And, perhaps coincidentally, it’s come while he’s in the midst of contract negotiations.
“There won’t be one dissenting voice in the Liverpool dressing room over the Egyptian being rewarded with a new contract that will make him the club’s highest earner,” noted former Red Robbie Fowler in The Mirror this week.
“In all honesty, we’re running out of superlatives about him. I’ll be amazed if there are no conversations about a new contract going on now.”
“He will almost certainly believe he is worth a bit more than he is earning and, of course, be entitled to a pay rise. Judging by his performances right now you have to give him what he wants.”
Certainly Salah deserves a new deal, and with it a raise. He deserves to be Liverpool’s top earner. But no matter his quality, what he wants still does have to fit into the club’s existing wage structure, even if it’s a number that puts him at the top of it.
Over the summer, Alisson, Fabinho, Jordan Henderson, Trent Alexander-Arnold, and Virgil van Dijk all signed new deals. Van Dijk, the world’s top centre half, was the biggest of the deals with a wage of £220k per week reported.
Salah’s new contract, if there is to be a new contract, will be for more than that. But it cannot be so much more the result is Van Dijk and their other stars feeling undervalued—though Fowler thinks there might be a fair bit of leeway there.
“Having been in numerous dressing rooms from a player’s point of view,” Fowler added, “I honestly don’t think there will be any problems with Mo becoming easily the best-paid player at Anfield.
“We are talking about one of the standout world players. I would be absolutely amazed if there is one single player in that Liverpool dressing room who is saying he doesn’t deserve a contract to match his world-class status.”