Mohamed Salah’s Liverpool era is ending; he must finish strong

The Egyptian just hasn’t looked like his usual brilliant self since returning from injury, but his team needs him at his best at Goodison Park.

Some of the most memorable moments of Jurgen Klopp’s sensational spell as Liverpool manager have come in European competition, so it was jarring to see his final continental campaign end with a whimper. It just didn’t feel right. The narrative was all wrong. Win or lose, a stellar showdown in Dublin – rather than a lame last-eight exit in Bergamo – would have made for a far more fitting finale.

Mohamed Salah copped plenty of criticism for his role in Liverpool’s tame Europa League elimination. The Egyptian had given Liverpool the lead just seven minutes into the second leg of their quarter-final clash with Atalanta, but he had also wasted a glorious chance to really breathe new life into a tie that the Italians appeared to have killed off at Anfield. For many observers, Salah rather personified the lethargic Liverpool we have seen in recent weeks, but Klopp unsurprisingly jumped to the defence of a man that has rescued the Reds on so many occasions over the past few years.

“I’m not particularly concerned,” he told reporters. “That’s what strikers do. We have to go through it, he has to go through it. He is one of the most experienced players in the squad. It’s not that Mo didn’t miss chances before in his life, that’s part of the game… I won’t make a big story of it.”

But Salah’s slump is now a major a talking point, as there is a very real risk that Liverpool’s Premier League title tilt could end as meekly as their Europa League bid

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