Mohamed Salah is using Liverpool as a “stepping stone” to join La Liga giants Real Madrid, says former Manchester United defender Gary Neville. No player has scored more Premier League goals than Salah since he joined Liverpool in 2017. The Egyptian has played a big part in last season’s Champions League triumph and this term’s impending Premier League success.
But Neville believes Salah’s intentions are to one day play for Real.
The pundit says he cannot blame Salah for wanting to move to the Bernabeu after he saw the likes of David Beckham, Ruud Van Nistelrooy and Cristiano Ronaldo make the same move during his playing days.
But Neville reckons Liverpool fans do not think of Salah as fondly as some of his team-mates because they know he wants to leave at some point.
“It’s never easy to replace a player like that,” Neville said on Monday Night Football.
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“I said 18 months ago I thought Mo Salah would leave Liverpool.
“I think it’s a little bit more simple in the sense of why Liverpool fans maybe don’t demonstrate that love for Salah, and it’s affinity and loyalty.
“I think there’s a feeling that he wants to go and play at Real Madrid, he’ll go to Barcelona, he’ll take the big move.
“That’s not a criticism of Mo Salah. I played with David Beckham, I played with Ruud van Nistelrooy, played with Cristiano Ronaldo – they wanted to aspire to win the Ballon d’Or, they wanted to be at Real Madrid, they wanted to be up in lights and play at the biggest clubs in the world.
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“I think there’s a feeling, affinity, loyalty, ‘will he leave us?’, I think he could.
“I think he is ultimately using Liverpool potentially as a stepping stone for his career.
“He has aspirations to be [higher]. Let’s be honest, Real Madrid and Barcelona for a lot of players are the pinnacle.
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“When a player maybe doesn’t celebrate other players’ goals or is popular in the team, when a player looks selfish and doesn’t pass to his team-mates when you’ve got a spirit like Liverpool have got, again those things just erode a little bit of confidence in the fans.
“Some players just aren’t naturally as popular as others purely because of the fact they are a little bit more selfish.
“Salah would be upset I think if a team won 2-0 and he missed two chances and didn’t score.”
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