Mohamed Salah has reiterated his importance to Liverpool

Salah's poor performances of late should not cloud the fact that remains Liverpool's most potent attacking player.
Everton FC v Liverpool FC - Premier League
Everton FC v Liverpool FC - Premier League / Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/GettyImages

On Thursday, Liverpool unveiled their new home kit for the upcoming season. While Mohamed Salah, their top scorer of the campaign, was pictured sporting it, the question looming in the background is whether he’ll be around to feature in it next season. 

A loss of form over recent weeks, compounded by a touchline row with manager Jurgen Klopp during Liverpool’s 2-2 draw at West Ham last Sunday has cast his future at Anfield into the most doubt its been in since his arrival at the club in 2017.

The Egyptian will be 32 in a month. The gamble Liverpool will have to take is whether his poor performances of late are simply down to a loss of form or the start of a more gradual decline. 

His header in Sunday’s 4-2 win over Spurs marked his first goal from open play since he netted the winner against Brighton on March 31st.

In the eight games prior to today, Liverpool’s top scorer could muster only two goals from the spot and struggled to make any other noteworthy contribution.

As Liverpool’s title charge withered over the last few weeks, in large part because their finishing in the final third has let them down, Salah certainly bears his share of guilt. 

However, it’s certainly worth remembering that the Reds would not have even been contenders for the prize were it not for what Salah had produced earlier this season.

18 goals and 10 assists still represents an excellent tally and was what fired Liverpool to the top of the league for several weeks to begin with. 

Salah has looked invisible in recent weeks, but even when he was scoring regularly earlier this season, there were certain periods in which he lacked much impact before he popped up with a goal or an assist.

That anonymity has now become more pronounced because of his goal drought. Even throughout this dry spell, however, his absence of goals has resulted more from a lack of composure in goal scoring positions than a struggle to find himself in such positions. The former is generally easier to remedy than the latter. 

When evaluating Salah’s campaign, it’s also necessary to recognize that the burden on him to deliver is considerably greater than it was in years past.

If Salah had an off game two or three seasons ago, the Reds could still rely on Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino to bail him out.

For all the quality of Liverpool’s other forwards, only Diogo Jota has proven himself capable of putting up similar numbers to Salah, but the Portuguese international’s proneness to injury limits his availability throughout the season. 

The winger has given more to Liverpool than any attacking player since he signed for the club and despite a poor run of matches that has well remained the case throughout this campaign. As the Reds plan for their business this summer transfer window, they would do well not to lose sight of that fact.