Mohamed Salah will be just as dangerous this season as he was last term, according to Roy Hodgson.
The Crystal Palace boss has warned his Eagles to beware Egypt forward Salah in Monday night’s Premier League clash at Selhurst Park.
Hodgson, a former Liverpool manager, believes the Reds are ready for a Premier League title tilt under Jurgen Klopp, and expects Salah to repeat the heroics that catapulted him to 44 goals in 2017-18.
“There’s no doubt in my mind that he will be good this season because of the qualities he possesses,” said Hodgson.
“But of course for him and his club, people will keep cranking up expectations and that’s not a great thing to have to deal with either for the player or the club.
“You’re playing against players who cost a lot of money, players who have a very strong pedigree, players whose technical ability is very good, whose physical capacity is good.
“I don’t know that you can necessarily stop them for 90 minutes from getting anywhere near your goal – that might be too strong an objective.
“But we hope we can keep them quiet enough for us to get enough of the ball and cause them enough problems to get a result in the game, it really isn’t more complicated than that.”
Backing the Reds to push the likes of reigning champions Manchester City all the way this term, Hodgson continued: “It’s a big club. It’s a long time since I was there.
“The people who employed me weren’t the people who took over the club and have carried it forward.
“It was a very different Liverpool that I joined to the one we see today, because the one we see today has had a lot of money invested in it. We didn’t have any money to spend. They’ve spent a few bob over the last couple of years.
“Liverpool have been good for, say, the last two seasons. They’re getting better all the time and last season was a marvellous season for them, reaching the Champions League final.
“This year they are looking, if anything, ready to kick on from that and mount an even stronger challenge in the league.”
A video posted online appeared to show the player sitting in traffic as a number of people, including children, gathered near his car before he drove off.
A Liverpool spokesman said: “The club, after discussion with the player, have made Merseyside Police aware of the footage and the circumstances surrounding its capture.
“We have spoken to the player also and will deal with any follow-up internally.
“Neither the club or player will be making any further comment on this matter.”
Merseyside Police said: “We have been made aware of a video believed to show a footballer using a mobile phone whilst driving.
“This has been passed to the relevant department. Thanks for letting us know.”
The Egypt international scored 11 goals to help Jurgen Klopp’s side reach the final in Kiev, where they lost 3-1 to Real Madrid.
The Belgium international joins Real Madrid pair Toni Kroos and Luka Modric as the trio of players up for that award.
New Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson Becker could also be named as the Champions League’s best goalkeeper for his performances at former club Roma, but the Brazilian will need to see off Madrid’s Keylor Navas and Gianluigi Buffon – who played for Juventus but is now at Paris St Germain.
The best defender award will definitely go to a Real Madrid player as Marcelo, Sergio Ramos and Raphael Varane are the three nominees.
The nominees were chosen by coaches and journalists, with the winners announced during the draw for this season’s group stage on August 30.
The Europa League does not have individual positional awards but will crown a player of the tournament from 2017-18 when the group stage for that competition is conducted a day later.
Manchester United’s late transfer target Diego Godin is one of three players shortlisted for the award – won in 2017 by Paul Pogba – with the Atletico Madrid defender in the running against team-mate Antoine Griezmann, scorer of two goals in the final win over Marseille – who have Dimitri Payet nominated.