Liverpool face huge Mo Salah headache next season

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Liverpool have had a rocky start to their title defence.

The Premier League champions were in incredible form throughout the 2019/20 season, ultimately winning the title at a canter.

But this season, they have already tasted defeat, going down 7-2 in a stunning upset against Aston Villa, while they also dropped points against Everton in the Merseyside derby.

Nevertheless, they are top of the Premier League table, by a point from Leicester City, though they also have the remarkable feat of being the team to have conceded the most goals in the division.

And they are now facing up to the prospect of seeing Mohamed Salah leave the trenches as he looks to represent his country in two separate competitions next season.

The Egypt international could head abroad as the country’s Under-23 coach, Shawky Gharib, has confirmed his intention to pick the Reds star for the Olympics.

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Speaking to Ahram Online, as quoted by The Daily Mirror, he said: "The team's technical staff and the Egyptian Football Association have the desire to call up Mohamed Salah for the Olympics.

"Salah is a world class player and I hope that he will be able to play with us in the Olympics. When you have such a player in your team, the objectives of the team would be different.

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the Olympics have been pushed back to July of next year and will run until early August, while the African Cup of Nations has also been rescheduled.

That will now take place in February 2022, and it opens the door to Salah potentially missing the bulk of Liverpool’s season because of international tournaments. It is worth noting that Naby Keita and Sadio Mane are also likely to be picked by their countries for the AFCON.

GIVEMESPORT’S Harry Sherlock says…

This is something of a nightmare for Liverpool.

The idea of being midway through the tournament and losing two of their fabled front three, as well as a key midfielder, is akin to the worst injury crisis Jurgen Klopp could endure.

With Salah also potentially going to the Olympics, it opens the door to him not having the necessary amount of time to prepare for the campaign properly.

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It is clear just how good Salah is – Liverpool probably wouldn’t have won the league without him – and having him spirited away twice would be a huge blow.

Liverpool, though, might ultimately be powerless to stop it happening.

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