Mohamed Salah could miss Liverpool’s opening Premier League game next season to represent Egypt at Tokyo Olympics
Feb. 12, 2020
Liverpool could be without Mohamed Salah for their opening Premier League match next season.
That’s because Egypt Under-23s boss Shawky Gharib has claimed Salah will be in the Pharaohs’ squad for the 2020 Olympics football tournament
The games are being held in Tokyo with the men’s football competition starting on July 23.
The gold medal match will be contested on August 8, which is during the first weekend of the 2020/21 Premier League season.
Each country is allowed three players over the age of 23 and Salah, 27, is Gharib’s first choice.
The Under-23s manager did admit he is yet to speak to Salah but is confident the forward will participate in Japan.
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The youth coach said: “Out of the three senior players we’ll call up, Salah is the only one we’re settled on so far because he’s simply one of the top three players in the world.
“I haven’t talked to Salah at all about him joining the U-23 squad for the Olympics, but in all honesty, his participation in the Olympics will need a little effort from him as well.”
Salah’s agent, Ramy Abbas Issa, wrote on Twitter stressing that ‘no decision has been made’ yet, however.
No decision has been made yet. https://t.co/r6uvOAW7kB — Ramy Abbas Issa (@RamyCol) February 12, 2020
Salah would miss all of Liverpool’s pre-season training if he chooses to participate. He would also miss the Reds’ opening match of the season if Egypt made it to the final, and likely further fixtures to ensure adequate rest and recovery time.
Liverpool are already facing the prospect of losing Salah, as well as Sadio Mane and Naby Keita, for a chunk of next season, due to the Africa Cup of Nations dates being changed to January 2021 rather than being a summer tournament.
Speaking about the Egyptian’s potential involvement in the Olympics last month, Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp said: “The Olympics is a wonderful thing but it would not be too cool.
“No decision has been made yet. What I have to say I will say it to Mo, so that is all. Neither side has made a decision.
“I wish we could have whole squad together for pre-season but that is not possible for different reasons.”
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