Mohamed Salah has won the Football Writers’ Association Footballer of the Year award for the second time in his career.
Throw in the Carabao Cup victory as well as a potential FA Cup triumph and you’ll quickly get the impression that the FWA prize might be the first of many garlanding Salah’s 2021/22 campaign.
Salah wins FWA award
While, yes, the likes of Joao Cancelo and Rodri have also been in scintillating form, you’d be hard pressed to argue that there’s been a better Premier League player over the last eight months than Salah.
At the end of the day, the Egyptian superstar is on course to win a third Premier League Golden Boot in just five seasons with 22 strikes, as well as 13 assists to boot, on his record.
And with journalists across the country giving Salah the gong that he deserves, the Liverpool star was able to make the first of what will surely be many awards ceremony appearances.
Having helped inspire the Reds to a Champions League final on Tuesday night, the 29-year-old was decked out in a suave suit to collect the award that he so richly deserved in person.
Villarreal 2-3 Liverpool Match Reaction (Football Terrace)
Salah wants Real Madrid
And what happened in between Liverpool’s comeback at Villarreal and Salah getting his hands on silverware? Oh, just some game between Real Madrid and Manchester City, blah, blah, blah.
Ok, jokes aside, it was inevitable that Salah’s public appearance at the FWA awards would lead to at least some questioning about the fact that Liverpool had learnt their Champions League final opponents.
Plus, it just so happens that Salah got what he wished for with the Reds winger having said in his post-match interview at the Estadio de la Cerámica that he wanted to play against Real Madrid.
“I want to play Madrid, I have to be honest,” Salah told BT Sport. “Because we lost in the final before against them. So I want to play against them, hopefully win it against them as well.”
"It's great to be in the final for the third time in five years."— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) May 3, 2022
"I want to play Real Madrid, I have to be honest."
"Hopefully we'll win it from them as well."
Mo Salah has his heart set on mending Liverpool's 2018 #UCL heartbreak 😤 pic.twitter.com/2MhLfMgYjv
Salah hungry for revenge
So, what did Salah have to say now that Real have indeed been confirmed as Liverpool’s opponents? ‘It’s revenge time’.
Yes, that’s right, you could just tell that Salah was mentally rubbing his hands together at the thought of avenging the 2018 final defeat in which he was forced off injured after a challenge from Sergio Ramos.
According to the Liverpool Echo, Salah replied when asked if the Reds wanted revenge: “Yeah. It’s revenge time. They beat us in the final last time. It was a very sad day for all of us, so yeah.
“We have to focus on the Premier League first. We have four games left and so do City. We wish they will drop points. We just need to focus on the Spurs game and then go from there.
Mo Salah on facing Madrid in the final:— Samuel (@SamueILFC) May 5, 2022
‘It’s revenge time!” 🔥 pic.twitter.com/y5603Sihbr
“I said I wanted to play them in the final. I’m sure it’s going to be a tough game. They beat a lot of good teams but I’m excited. The team is excited. We need to stay focused. We have to finish the league first, then we will see.”
Salah pumped for victory
He wants this real bad, doesn’t he?
You can understand why because the way that Liverpool lost the 2018 final really left a sense of ‘what if?’ amongst the Kopites who made the trip to Kyiv.
From Ramos forcing Salah off the pitch with that challenge to the whole debacle surrounding Loris Karius, you can certainly understand why the Merseyside club feels as though there’s some unfinished business.
And given the form that Salah has enjoyed this season – securing the FWA award in the process – you wouldn’t put it past him to exact revenge on Real in the most spectacular way possible. Bring it on.