Mohamed Salah saying he will be at Liverpool next season regardless of what happens on the contract front “was clearly a threat”, says Robbie Fowler, with a Reds legend asking questions of the “calculations” being run at Anfield.
Discussions regarding fresh terms for a talismanic presence have dragged on for some time, but no paperwork has been signed and a three-time Golden Boot winner could work his way towards free agency in 2023.
Efforts are being made to prevent such an occurrence from happening – especially as Sadio Mane has already departed for Bayern Munich – but Fowler believes more needs to be done in order to convince Salah that his standing among the global elite is being recognised.
Will Salah sign a new contract at Liverpool?
Fowler, who took in two spells at Anfield during his playing days and was affectionately known as ‘God’ by Reds supporters, has told The Mirror of a long-running Salah saga on Merseyside: “I won’t pretend to know what’s going on with his contract, but clearly the answer is: nothing much. And that leaves so many questions unanswered.
"One thing is obvious, the club has done some very clear, precise and unemotional calculations with Mane. He’s 31 in April, has a huge amount of running in his legs, and wanted a huge contract as one of the best players in the world.
“I don’t blame him for that. Mane is the equal of virtually every world class star at the moment, and rightly wanted that recognition with the going rate for the last big contract of his career.
"What Liverpool so obviously did though, was run their analytics - which to their credit they do so well - and decided selling him to buy Darwin Nunez and keep their wage structure in place was the right thing for the club. It begs the question, what calculations have they run on Salah?
“Again, I don’t know all the answers, but what screams out to me so clearly, is they won’t be breaking their wage structure to keep him. If they were prepared to do that, it would have happened by now. But look, I can’t blame Salah for wanting the going rate, just like Mane did. He’s the Premier League Golden Boot winner, he’s the Footballer of the Year and in with a great shout of the Ballon d’Or top three.
“What salary does a player in the top three in the world command? He obviously believes it’s more than Liverpool are offering. But if my old club are running complex calculations, then so too is Salah - and it can never be a precise science. I think him saying no matter what happens with his contract, he’ll be at Anfield next year was clearly a threat.”
Does Salah deserve a lucrative extension?
The 30-year-old forward has been a revelation for Liverpool since completing a transfer from Roma during the summer window of 2017.
He hit 44 goals in his debut campaign, which resulted in him landing the first of his Golden Boots and PFA Player of the Year awards.
Salah is now up to 156 efforts for the Reds through 254 appearances and is a Champions League and Premier League title winner.
He has been a model of consistency for Jurgen Klopp’s side, allowing a standing among the best in the world to be established, but speculation regarding his future has now raged for some time.
There have been various reports speculating on the terms tabled by Liverpool, but it is yet to be determined whether a compromise will be reached that allows a modern day Reds legend to remain in his current surroundings.