Mohamed Salah and Amr Adib – Screenshot from Youtube Video by ON ENT channel
CAIRO – 12 May 2018: The “Egyptian King”, Mohamed Salah, had an interview with famous Egyptian pundit Amr Adib at ON ENT channel on April 25. Here are the most important quotes of Mohamed Salah from the interview.
To watch the full interview:
Amr Adib : When was the magical moment? How was this surprising excellence achieved?
Salah : If you compared me now to myself a year ago, you would definitely find a change. Two years ago is different from a year ago, three years ago is different from two years ago and so on. There is quite a change by time, thank God. I am always trying to improve my performance every year. That’s why I see myself always in a better position. So, I try to develop myself in various aspects.
Another thing, since the day I left Egypt, I made a decision that I will stay in Europe. I said to myself that I don’t want to be like anyone else who travelled to Europe and returned back. I wanted to adapt to the atmosphere here and I wanted to be someone different in all aspects. This was from the very first day, literally.
Amr Adib : Did you meet Mourinho after getting back to England?
Salah : I did meet him twice – in our match here at Anfield [Liverpool vs Manchester United] and in the other match in Manchester; he told me that he is happy with what I am doing. So, I thanked him. We didn’t talk much; I just said “hi” to him and he told me that he was happy for me.
Amr Adib Can a football coach [Klopp] affect a player that much?
Salah : A coach makes a difference, as does the way of playing. Even your teammates make a big difference. But, the scale of the players’ development is the most essential. It looks like a puzzle with all of its pieces; you can’t make a complete scene with some pieces only. Both my teammates and the coach helped me a lot; nothing is solo.
Amr Adib : What are his pros as a coach?
Salah : He knows how to deal with each match as a single match. And he knows how to play with each team in accordance with their strengths and weaknesses. He also knows how to deal with his players very well.
Amr Adib : People always like to rank players and to know who is the first, second, third and so on. Do comparisons with Ronaldo and Messi bother you?
Salah : Not at all. But I don’t want to say that I am happy with these kinds of comparisons, because each of them was at top level for 10 or 11 years. Their performance level is stable. Yet, I need to maintain my high performance level for many seasons. I hope I can do so. Definitely, they are great players.
Amr Adib : Who is Liverpool’s closest player to you?
Salah : As for now, Dejan Lovren is the closest one, as well as Van Dijk and Emre Can; he is now injured, so I wish him speedy recovery.
Amr Adib : Which world star’s evaluation matters to you? Maradona, Pele or Gerard?
Salah : All of them. The names you mentioned are such icons in football. I feel so happy whenever a football icon praises me, regardless of who he is.
Amr Adib : Tell me about your feelings after Congo’s equalizer? [Salah scored the winning goal in the 95th minute of Egypt’s match against Congo in the fifth round of the World Cup qualifiers. But before this historical moment, Congo scored the equalizer in the 87th minute, which let the fans and Salah down for a few minutes.]
Salah : These may be the most difficult moments I have experienced in my whole life. This is my first time to say this; I mean I have never said this in any interview before. It was really tough. When I fell on the ground [after the equalizer], I was watching the referee, hoping to see a flag or hear it was offside, as I couldn’t believe they scored a goal in our net. I looked at the screen to see how much time we still had; I found it was the 87th minute. I lowered my head again hopelessly, as I didn’t understand what happened. I was thinking whether this would be the final result or not. I said to myself that I would never accept this as a final result. Although I knew from inside that this was super difficult, as we had only four or three minutes remaining. At the same time, I was telling myself that if other players saw me so disappointed like this, none of them would be able to play enthusiastically. All of these feelings were in less than 10 seconds. I decided to stand up and motivate other players. I was burning by the fire of rejection of a final result like this. I screamed, pretending to be motivating them, but it was the fire. It was a very hard moment.
Amr Adib : Are you leaving Liverpool or staying?
Salah : All that I can say is that I’m happy to be here and I’m adapted to the prevailing atmosphere. I’m thinking to end the season in the perfect way.
Amr Adib : You’re playing Fantasy [Football]? Tell me, who are the 10 players you chose to play on your team? [Fantasy Football is a game in which the participants serve as the general managers of virtual professional gridiron football teams.]
Salah : I frequently change players; I feel I have to change players. No one is permanent on the team, but I can tell you who I remember. The goalkeeper Courtois from Chelsea, Hegazi, Elneny was on my team but I sold him [laughing], Mane, Firmino from Liverpool, Vardy from Leicester City, Matic from Manchester United, Hazard from Chelsea and Kevin de Bruyne from Manchester City.
Amr Adib : Imagine if your career had a different direction and you signed for Zamalek before going to Europe. What would have happened?
Salah : I think if I had signed for Zamalek, I wouldn’t have been here. Nobody knows, but what I want to say is that Al-Ahly and Zamalek let only a few players to leave their clubs. So when I didn’t sign for Zamalek, I signed for FC Basel a month later, where I started my career abroad.