The way that Liverpool’s talisman left the Ibrox pitch on Wednesday night has raised eyebrows and only inspired more rumours of a rift between Salah and other Anfield figures.
Liverpool star Mohamed Salah has endured a tricky start to the season so far, so it comes as a surprise that his behaviour is under scrutiny in the wake of his best performance of the campaign to date.
The Egyptian international recorded the fastest hat-trick in Champions League history when he put three past Rangers in just six minutes during the Reds’ 7-1 mauling of the Scottish giants. Salah was only introduced in the 68th minute but more than made an input, with the scoreline marking the heaviest defeat Rangers have ever suffered at Ibrox.
Jurgen Klopp’s men looked significantly closer to being back to their best than most of their other outings so far this term, but Salah’s decision to trudge straight down the tunnel instead of thanking the travelling Reds faithful has not gone undetected and without complaint.
The majority of the other Liverpool squad members made sure to show their appreciation to those who had made the trip to Scotland. The conduct from the Reds talisman is only going to increase speculation he isn’t entirely happy with the situation he finds himself in at Anfield.
Supporters made their feelings on the incident clear via social media after the game, with one fan writing: “Salah grabbing the match ball and heading down the tunnel without thanking the travelling fans says a lot about where his head is at.”
Another fan suggested that the response would have been very different had it been Manchester United forward Cristiano Ronaldo acting in such a way.
Bit odd to see Salah walk straight down the tunnel after full time. At least go and see the fans. If Ronaldo had done that, it would be everywhere,” they claimed.
The comparisons with the Old Trafford icon didn’t stop there, with another supporter adding: “So Salah scores a hat trick, grabs the ball then straight down the tunnel, no handshakes, no thanking the fans, poor show, no defence for that Ronaldo-type attitude.”
Klopp explained his decision to start Salah from the bench after the game, insisting that it was nothing to do with trying to rest him for Sunday’s visit of Manchester City.
It’s not with half an eye on the weekend,” the Reds boss claimed. “It’s just we just have to realise that we’re in the middle of a very busy period. We cannot force the boys through, we have to make changes.
We can do changes and we can make them. Diogo [Jota] was not planned, obviously. That’s why he was in the press conference yesterday. But then you get a call from the medical department, ‘He can play but not too long.’ Oh great.
“So then we’d rather change somebody else who can play 90 minutes and that’s why he doesn’t start. He’s on the bench and is available.”