Liverpool star Mohamed Salah reveals he always wanted to prove critics wrong in Premier League

Carl Markham 16/05/2018
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Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah admits he always had a drive to return to the Premier League to prove his critics wrong and now hopes the season will have a special end to it.

The Egypt international arrived from Roma last summer with many critics questioning his signing on the basis of 12 unsuccessful months at Chelsea three years previously.

However, having won the Premier League Golden Boot by setting a new record of 32 goals in a season, Salah silenced his doubters and hopes to sign off with victory in the Champions League final against Real Madrid later this month.

“It was always on my mind to perform the best I can,” he told easports.com.

“I had two great seasons in Rome but it was always on my mind to come back to the Premier League to show the people who said I didn’t succeed here the first time and prove that I can be a success in the Premier League.”

Manager Jurgen Klopp’s influence – and his tactics – helped Salah hit the ground running and the 25-year-old recognises the input the German has had.

Klopp 1

“You know, before everything we are friends. I like him a lot,” added the Egyptian, who is looking to add to his 44 goals this season against Real Madrid.

“He has helped me a lot to do what I’m doing on the field and off it.

“I have to thank him for everything he has done this year. I really respect him a lot and I’m sure we are going to do something special for the club this year to end it.”

Defender Virgil van Dijk has urged the team to be brave against the Champions League holders when they meet on May 26 in Ukraine.

“We need to be going to Kiev with a lot of confidence,” he told liverpoolfc.com.

“We know they have so much quality. But we don’t need to forget that we have so much quality as well.

“We’re not there for no reason. We deserve to be there, so we need to show that, be brave and do our thing. Then we’ll see what’s going to happen.”

Midfielder Emre Can’s chances of being fit for the Champions League final look remote as the back injury which has kept him out since March has cost him a place in Germany’s World Cup squad.

The 24-year-old could have played his last match for the club as his contract expires next month and speculation has continually linked him with a move away.

Provided by Press Association Sport

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Five things you need to know about Liverpool's Trent Alexander-Arnold

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Trent Alexander-Arnold‘s impressive performances for Liverpool this season have put him in contention for a place in Gareth Southgate’s World Cup squad.

Here’s a closer look at the 19-year-old ahead of Wednesday’s squad announcement.

1. Early yearnings

Alexander-Arnold grew up in West Derby, a short walk from Liverpool’s training ground. As a young boy he used to wait at the gates of Melwood or look through the cracks in the wall to see if he could spot the likes of Steven Gerrard, Jamie Carragher or Xabi Alonso.

The family home may have moved since then but Alexander-Arnold still lives with his mum Diane and two brothers Tyler and Marcel.

Trent

2. Lucky break

His Liverpool career actually began with a stroke of fortune. Around the time he was six the club were holding summer community camps and sent invitations to local schools but demand was so high Alexander-Arnold’s class held a raffle – and his name was picked out.

Within 30 minutes of him being there one of the coaches asked his mum to bring him to their sessions two or three times a week.

Trent Alexander-Arnold of Liverpool 1

3. Influences

The greatest has to be mum Diane. He said: “She has been with me every single step of the way. Without her and the family all around me, I definitely wouldn’t be where I am.” During his spell at the academy Diane would take Christmas presents to the staff to say thanks.

Even when he graduated to the first-team’s Melwood base she continued, delivering doughnuts one day much to her son’s surprise.

Originally a midfielder in his mid-teens, when it became apparent there may be a first-team opening in defence, coach Neil Critchley pored over hours of footage with the youngster using Germany’s Philipp Lahm and Brazil’s Dani Alves as role models.

Trent Alexander

4. Grand master

While many 19-year-olds may typically be glued to their PlayStation or Xbox, Alexander-Arnold also has a more cerebral pastime: chess.

Again it comes from a parental influence which was quite strict about education, with Alexander-Arnold getting involved with a club at school and then taking that home to play his brothers.

On long trips Alexander-Arnold has found a new opponent in Ben Woodburn, a year his junior, with the pair spending hours playing on either a virtual board or, as in the case for last summer’s pre-season trip, a real one.

His speed on the pitch is not reflected in his chess game, however, with Woodburn reportedly complaining he takes too long to consider his moves.

Trent Alexander-Arnold 1

5. Bigger picture

Alexander-Arnold is involved with An Hour for Others, a community organisation where local people and businesses are involved in helping many of the most vulnerable in society; elderly living alone, families coping with illness and bereavement, children living in poverty or being bullied at school.

Alexander-Arnold has become an ambassador for the organisation and through his association with the charity struck up a friendship with Louis Henry, a young boy with cerebral palsy.

For the final match of the season at Anfield, the defender provided lounge tickets for the youngster’s family and took Louis in his wheelchair on to the pitch with him for the lap of honour.

Trent Alexander-Arnold of Liverpool celebrates

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Liverpool's Mohamed Salah reveals his favourite goal of the season and it's not one you'd expect

David Cooper 15/05/2018
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Mohamed Salah celebrates scoring against Spartak Moscow

Having scored 43 goals for Liverpool in all competitions this season, Mohamed Salah undoubtedly has a few highlight-reel finishes.

Indeed, there was the delicate dink in the first leg against Roma, the twist and turn left-foot curler against Everton, the halfway lob over Ederson against Manchester City and even a looping header in a win over Bournemouth.

The 25-year-old has scored many and all types of goals this season, too many to even dilute into a straightforward top five.

But the Egyptian has earmarked his favourite finish of the campaign and it’s not one you would expected.

“The goal I scored against Spartak Moscow (at Anfield in the Champions League), which was the seventh for us,” he told ON Ent when asked about the goal which made him most happy this season.

“I couldn’t believe the team had scored so many goals and I didn’t get one of them.

“I knew I would be replaced during the match since we achieved a big result and had such an important game three days later.

“So I scored the sixth or seventh goal, I can’t remember but I would have been disappointed if I hadn’t scored that goal. That’s the best goal I scored for happiness.

“I always remember the coach wanted to a replace a player and I had to look at him and tell him through body language not to replace me without scoring.”

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