Mohamed Salah should hate Real Madrid, not want to join them, says John Aldridge, with the Liverpool forward suggesting that he may be open to making a move to Spain at some point.
The Egyptian has sparked fresh speculation regarding his future by admitting that he cannot rule out a move to Santiago Bernabeu, or to Barcelona on the other side of a fierce Clasico divide.
Salah has told AS: “I think Madrid and Barcelona are two top clubs.
“Who knows what will happen in the future, but right now I am focused on winning the Premier League and the Champions League with Liverpool again.”
Aldridge is not surprised to see transfer talk rage around a global superstar, with Salah now forming part of world football’s elite, but he would like to see the 28-year-old steer clear of Madrid given that the Blancos – and Sergio Ramos in particular – dashed his Champions League dreams in controversial circumstances back in 2018.
“If you’re a player of Salah’s quality, you’re always going to be linked with Real Madrid, Barcelona and other such deals. Harry Kane will be the next one as Tottenham fall away. That’s just the way it is,” former Reds striker Aldridge told the Liverpool Echo.
“Sadio Mane is talked about too. We’re talking about one of the very best forwards in the world. Mane, Salah - they’re always going to be linked with Real Madrid.
“Personally, I think after the experience of the Champions League final and the way Ramos treated him, I’d have had a hatred for Real Madrid if it was me, after that incident. It wouldn’t appeal to me but I wouldn’t want to leave Liverpool anyway.
“It’s up to Jurgen Klopp and what he wants. You have to trust the manager to deal with such situations when they arise in the right way. Players are so strong now, if they want to go then they’ll go. End of story.
“But Liverpool have got the best front three in the world, that goes without saying. Tottenham have got a fantastic front three and there’s other clubs as well, but you wouldn’t swap Salah, Mane or Firmino for anyone.”
Salah stepped off the bench to bag a record-setting brace for Liverpool in their 7-0 win over Crystal Palace on Saturday, with Sadio Mane less than impressed at having to make way for a club colleague that he has not always seen eye-to-eye with.
Aldridge has no issue with a public display of frustration from a Senegalese winger, adding: “I’m made up when players don’t want to come off, I used to do it all the time. I never wanted to come off, especially for Ireland. Jack Charlton always used to take me off with 15 minutes to go in a lot of games and I used to hate it and have a little go at Jack.
“But he knew what was best for me and I’m sure Jurgen has told Sadio, ‘I’m protecting you, I need you, you’re vital for me. I just don’t want you to get over-worked or injured.’
“That will have been the only reason and it was great to see his reaction because he’s hungry for goals. He’s not been scoring lately and he’s got his first goal back, that’s all it is.
“He wanted more and I have no problem with that.”