Mohamed Salah: Egypt Icon Slams Liverpool Star Amid AFCON Withdrawal

Mohamed Salah: Egypt Icon Slams Liverpool Star Amid AFCON Withdrawal

Edwin Kiplagat
updated at January 28, 2024 at 12:38 PM
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  • Mohamed Salah is back in Liverpool to continue his recovery from injury
  • The Egypt captain was injured during the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations
  • Egyptian legend has called out the Premier League star for leaving the Egypt camp in Ivory Coast

Mohamed Salah is not expected to participate in the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations with Egypt after his injury.

The Liverpool star received widespread criticism after he decided to return to Liverpool to recover.

Jurgen Klopp said he could return to Ivory Coast if he recovers but Pharaohs legend Hossam Hassan doesn't want to see Salah play for Egypt in Ivory Coast.

Mohamed Salah, Egypt, AFCON, Liverpool, DR Congo, Premier League
Mohamed Salah holds his hamstring during Egypt's AFCON game against Ghana. Photo by MB Media.
Source: Getty Images

Salah sustained a hamstring injury in the first half of Egypt's second group game against Ghana, a game they drew 2-2.

He watched the final group game against Cape Verde from the stands after he was initially ruled out for two games. News broke that he would return to Liverpool to continue his recovery. However, it became clear that his injury was much worse than first feared.

He received criticism from Egyptian fans and former players for his failure to stay with the team in the Ivory Coast. Salah fired back at critics through social media.

“Yesterday I started the treatment and rehabilitation program,” he wrote on X. “And I will do everything possible to be ready as soon as possible and return to the national team as was agreed upon from the beginning... I also love it and its people... try harder.”

Egypt takes on Dr Congo in the Round of 16 on Sunday, January 28.

Hossam Hassan blasts Salah

Hassan joined the likes of Wael Gomaa in criticising Salah for returning to Liverpool.

“If Salah feels he wants to travel, he should travel and not return to the national team again because the injury is not severe; he needs physiotherapy which is available with the national team," via KingFut.

Hassan won the AFCON with Egypt in 1986, 1998, and 2006. he believes Salah's absence affects the team.

“Salah, with his great value, should continue with the national team both morally and psychologically. It affects other teams that he can participate at any time, but his departure will affect Egypt negatively and the opponents positively."

It remains to be seen if Salah will return to the national team if they progress to the final, which is set for February 11.

Gomaa calls out Egypt's coach

Sports Brief earlier reported on Gomaa calling out Egypt coach Rui Vitoria after the Pharaohs draw against Egypt.

Vitoria has not won a match with Egypt at AFCON in Ivory Coast. They have drawn all their matches 2-2, but they managed to sneak into the last 16.

Gomaa expressed reservations about Rui Vitoria's suitability as Egypt's head coach, asserting that he lacks the ability to bring out the best in the team.

Edwin Kiplagat photo
Edwin Kiplagat
Edwin Kiplagat has five years of experience in journalism working as a Sports Editor at Africa Insight Communications and ESPN. Edwin Kiplagat is a Bachelor's Degree holder in journalism from the Multimedia University of Kenya.