Why Jurgen Klopp May Bench Mohamed Salah Against Everton in Crunch EPL Tie

Why Jurgen Klopp May Bench Mohamed Salah Against Everton in Crunch EPL Tie

Chukwu Ikechukwu
April 24, 2024 at 9:45 AM
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  • Mohamed Salah could be benched for Liverpool’s clash against Everton
  • The Egyptian has underperformed since returning from an ankle injury
  • Liverpool sit in second spot on the Premier League table with 74 points

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Mohamed Salah could be on the bench for the 64th English Premier League Merseyside derby which takes place on Wednesday night as Liverpool continue to push for the title.

The Reds are condemned to win at Goodison Park to keep their ambition of winning their second EPL title under Jurgen Klopp alive after watching Arsenal move to the summit with a comprehensive 5-0 victory against Chelsea on Tuesday, April 23.

Mohamed Salah, Liverpool, Fulham, Premier League, Egypt, Anfield.
Mohamed Salah was benched in Liverpool's 2-0 Premier League win against Fulham. Photo by Julian Finney.
Source: Getty Images

According to Opta, Liverpool are expected to take home all three points as Klopp’s men have lost just one of their last 26 league meetings against Everton, winning four of the last five and keeping a clean sheet in the last four.

The Reds, who are second on the log with 74 points, three behind the Gunners, will have to rely on Darwin Nunez and Luis Diaz to lead their attack while Salah could start from the bench.

The Egyptian has just not looked like his usual brilliant self since returning from injury and could play a bit-part role rather than be the main man upfront for Liverpool.

Why would Klopp bench Salah?

Salah copped plenty of criticism for his role in Liverpool’s tame Europa League elimination as the Reds were booted out by Atalanta 3-1 on aggregate by the Italian club, GOAL reports.

Despite scoring the only goal in the return leg in Italy, some Reds supporters blamed the Egyptian forward for wasting glorious chances that could have evened the tie after their 3-0 loss at Anfield.

Salah has not looked the same player since returning from an ankle injury he suffered while representing Egypt at the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations in January.

Is benching Salah the right move?

Liverpool desperately needs three points to keep alive their EPL title bid, but they have won only one of their last six trips to Goodison Park and therefore cannot afford any slip-ups against Everton, Daily Mirror reports.

The 31-year-old forward’s form has been disappointing since the international break and he has managed just three goals in seven games.

Klopp made the bold decision to leave Salah on the bench against Fulham, and his revitalized Liverpool team won 3-1, earning their best performance in two months.

The German manager will consider taking the same risk again against Everton as dropping points with five games remaining in the season is not an option for Liverpool.

Liverpool target Kudus as Salah’s replacement

Earlier, Sports Brief reported that Liverpool are considering a move for Mohamed Kudus ahead of the summer transfer window.

The 23-year-old has been earmarked as a replacement for Salah, who has been on the radar of Saudi giants Al-Ittihad since last summer.

Authors
Chukwu Ikechukwu photo
Chukwu Ikechukwu
Chukwu Ikechukwu Godwin is a journalist with over 9 years of experience in the Nigerian media industry. He has worked both in Radio (Today FM, Rhythm FM, Wish FM) and Television (Silverbird TV) as a Sports Analyst..