Ruud Gullit has claimed that Mohamed Salah does not work as hard as his partners in attack for Liverpool after their 4-0 win over Red Star Belgrade on Wednesday.
The 5ft 9 in Egypt international [Transfermarkt] scored twice on the night as the Reds bulldozed past the Serbian minnows at Anfield, with Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane netting the other two goals.
Gullit has now lavished praise on Firmino and Mane’s work-rate up front for Liverpool but did question whether Salah works as hard as his two attacking partners.
Speaking to beIN SPORTS, he said: “They have an un-Brazilian, hard-working striker – Firmino. Normally strikers wait for their chances but he works hard, he gets the ball back, he gets in position, and he scores goals.
“So what more do you want as a coach? If you have all these front three – maybe Salah is not the one who works that hard, but the others ones they do their job.”
— beIN SPORTS (@beINSPORTS) October 24, 2018
This is an interesting claim from Gullit, and one that is probably true. Firmino and Mane both work extremely hard to track back and get the ball back for the Reds, and while Salah does that work too, he does not usually do it with the same intensity as that duo. That being said, this is obviously something which manager Jurgen Klopp is happy with, and something which he has likely come up with himself. Such a manager does not allow players in his side who do not work hard enough and who do not follow instructions, so there is no chance that Salah is not working hard enough in Klopp’s eyes. The likelihood is that Salah has been instructed to stay forward more and use his pace on the break if the chance arises, with there being plenty of other bodies working hard in defence in his absence. This is a system which gives Liverpool such pace and power on the break, and makes them the brilliant team which we see today.