When Liverpool paid a club-record £37 million for Mohamed Salah in the summer, not everyone was convinced.
While the Egyptian had enjoyed a few decent seasons in Italy with spells at Fiorentina and Roma, he struggled the last time he was in England with Chelsea.
He managed just 19 matches at Stamford Bridge, scoring just twice.
What had changed in the few years since then?
Well, it seems quite a lot.
That’s because Salah looks a completely different player to what we saw at Chelsea and has already racked up an incredible 31 goals in all competitions for Jurgen Klopp’s side.
His latest strike during Liverpool’s 4-1 victory against West Ham put him level with Harry Kane in the Premier League goalscoring charts - ahead of Spurs’ match with Crystal Palace.
It also lifted the Reds into second place in the table.
Right now, it seems hard to think that any player in world football could do what Salah has been doing in this Liverpool side this season.
Ok, maybe Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo might have managed to score 31 goals but you couldn’t blame Liverpool fans for not wanting to swap Salah with anyone right now.
HAZARD OR SALAH
And that hypothetical question was put to Jamie Carragher ahead of Chelsea’s trip to Manchester United on Super Sunday.
The Sky Sports pundit was doing a Q&A ahead of the crunch match at Old Trafford and was asked: “Would you swap Mo Salah for Eden Hazard if you were a Liverpool manager?”
“Straight answer. No!”
You can’t argue with that.
While Hazard is often considered the most gifted player in the Premier League, there is logic in Carragher's answer.
Hazard’s best goal tally in the league is 16 - which he achieved during the 2016/17 title-winning campaign. His best goal tally in all competitions is 19 which was back in 2014/15 - where Chelsea won the league once again.
Salah has already scored 23 goals in the league and, as mentioned, 31 in all competitions. And we’re still in February.
When you consider that Hazard has, arguably, played in better sides than this current Liverpool one, then you understand why Carragher has opted for Salah.
But the Belgian has produced the goods in each of the six campaigns he’s been at Chelsea, while Salah is yet to complete a full season at Liverpool.
If Salah can replicate his incredible season once again next campaign, then you really wouldn’t blame Liverpool fans for not wanting to swap Salah for Hazard.
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