Why It Isn’t Fair To Compare Mohamed Salah With Lionel Messi
It isn’t shocking to see Harry Kane and Sergio Aguero fight tooth and nail for the Premier League Golden Boot but at the start of the season, nobody would have backed Mohamed Salah to rub shoulders with two of the league’s established strikers.
But as things stand, Salah has exceeded expectations this season and it won’t be surprising if he eventually goes on to win the Golden Boot.
The Egyptian netted his 30th goal in all competitions when he scored in the 5-0 win against Porto on Wednesday in the first leg of Champions League round of 16. He is building a strong case to win player of the year awards at the end of the season, although Manchester City’s Kevin De Bruyne lies ahead of him.
Salah has been the headline act at Liverpool this season, banging goals and creating havoc to opposition defences. The wide man has been an influential figure for the Reds with 22 goals in the Premier League since joining them at the start of the season from AS Roma.
Jurgen Klopp has got a gem of a player in Salah, who has started drawing comparisons to Barcelona star Lionel Messi.
Messi has been considered as the best player on the planet by millions due to everything the tiny body possesses. The Argentine can score goals, create opportunities, produce magical moments, win games single-handedly and the list of his attributes goes on and on.
The 5-time Ballon d’Or is a genius with the ball at his feet, capable of doing anything which other players can only think or dream about.
But Salah, in just one wonderful season with the Reds, has started drawing comparisons to Messi. The manner in which he scored against Porto on Wednesday was simply Messi-esque. Salah controlled the ball with his leg flicking it over the goalkeeper and cushioned with his head before putting it in the back of the net in just a blink of an eye.
“He’s as good as Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo,” former Barcelona and Inter striker Samuel Eto’o praised Salah for his breathtaking form this season.
However, Salah has a long way to go before he can be compared to the Barcelona legend. Fans of his native call him ‘the Egyptian Messi’ and rightly so as he singlehandedly dragged Egypt to the World Cup 2018.
Former Liverpool skipper Steven Gerrard has told the fans to stop comparing Salah to Messi.
“And we’ve seen a moment of magic from Mo Salah,” Gerrard was quoted by the Express.
“It’s not fair to the kid to compare him to Messi.”
Comparing Salah with Messi seems a little far-fetched and unfair. The Egyptian may have a similar style of play to that of Messi; a classy first touch, nimble-footed, quick and agile with a penchant for scoring terrific goals.
With all due respect to Salah’s style of play being likened to that of the Barcelona star, it would take the Egyptian winger to deliver goods consistently and win things at Liverpool before he truly achieves the recognition.
Till then, all these comparisons may make Salah feel good and hungry to deliver titles with the Reds, however, in the end, the comparisons are just naïve.