Mohamed Salah(Part 1)

12 Mar 2024

Mohamed Salah(Part 1)

Mohamed Salah Hamed Mahrous Ghaly, born on 15 June 1992, is an Egyptian professional footballer renowned as Mohamed Salah or Mo Salah. He currently plays as a right winger or forward for the Premier League club Liverpool and captains the Egypt national team. Considered one of the finest players of his generation and among the greatest African players ever, Salah is celebrated for his clinical finishing, exceptional dribbling skills, and remarkable speed.

Salah commenced his senior career in 2010 with Al Mokawloon Al Arab and moved to Basel in 2012, where he secured two Swiss Super League titles. In 2014, he joined Chelsea for a reported fee of £11 million but experienced limited playing time, leading to loans to Fiorentina and Roma. Roma eventually signed him permanently for €15 million after a successful 2016–17 season, where Salah played a crucial role in their title bid.

Salah made a significant transfer to Liverpool for a then-club record of £36.9 million. In his debut season, he set a record for the most Premier League goals (32) in a 38-game season and contributed to Liverpool reaching the 2018 UEFA Champions League final. Salah continued to be a key player in the following seasons, forming a potent attacking trio with Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mané, helping Liverpool secure Champions League and Premier League titles, along with the FA Cup, EFL Cup, and FA Community Shield.

Salah has earned numerous individual honors, including two PFA Players' Player of the Year awards, three Premier League Golden Boots, Premier League Player of the Season, and Premier League Playmaker of the Season. He also achieved high rankings in the Best FIFA Men's Player and FIFA Ballon d'Or. In 2023, Salah became Liverpool's top Premier League goalscorer, scoring his 200th goal for the club.

Internationally, Salah represented Egypt at various levels and earned accolades such as CAF Most Promising African Talent of the Year. He finished as a runner-up in the Africa Cup of Nations in 2017 and 2021 and was the top scorer in CAF qualification for the 2018 FIFA World Cup. Salah has been named CAF African Footballer of the Year (2017 and 2018), BBC African Footballer of the Year (2017 and 2018), and has earned several selections in the Africa Cup of Nations Team of the Tournament and the CAF Team of the Year.Salah holds the status of a national pride symbol in Egypt, with Time magazine recognizing him among the 100 most influential people in 2019. He has also been credited for elevating Liverpool's profile in Egypt, earning the nickname "Fourth Pyramid" among Egyptians and the title "Pride of the Arabs" across the Arab world.

Salah's football journey began in the youth setups of local teams Ittihad Basyoun and Othmason Tanta. Inspired by legends such as Ronaldo, Zinedine Zidane, and Francesco Totti during his childhood, he showcased his talents early on. In 2006, at the age of 14, Salah caught the attention of scouts while playing for the youth team of Al Mokawloon Al Arab. Originally there to watch another player, the scout was captivated by Salah's skills, prompting his move to the youth team.
This transition required Salah to make a three-hour journey to training, often causing him to miss school. Identified by the first-team manager, Mohamed Radwan, at the age of 15, Salah was immediately promoted to the senior squad. Due to his young age and still developing muscles, Salah underwent a special diet and training program.

Salah marked his first-team debut on 3 May 2010, entering the field as a substitute in a 1–1 away draw against El Mansoura. Throughout the 2010–11 season, he progressively earned more playing time and became a regular fixture in the team. Despite consistent appearances, Salah faced challenges in finding the net. Post-matches, he would occasionally be emotional, with Radwan noting that such setbacks only fueled Salah's determination to improve.
Salah finally broke his goal-scoring drought on 25 December 2010, netting in a 1–1 away draw against Al Ahly. He maintained a regular presence for Al Mokawloon, featuring in every game during the 2011–12 season. However, the season was abruptly halted following the Port Said Stadium riot on 1 February 2012, leading to the suspension of the Egyptian Premier League. On 10 March, the Egyptian Football Association announced the cancellation of the remainder of the season.

Swiss Super League club Basel had been keeping an eye on Salah for a while, and after the suspension of the Egyptian Premier League, the club arranged a friendly match with the Egypt national under-23 team. This match, held on 16 March at the Stadion Rankhof in Basel, saw Salah playing only in the second half, yet he managed to score twice, contributing to a 4–3 victory for the Egyptians. Impressed by his performance, Basel extended an invitation for Salah to stay in the city for a week of training. On 10 April 2012, it was officially announced that Salah had signed a four-year contract with Basel, effective from 15 June 2012.Initially facing challenges in settling down, Salah arrived without knowing the language and was signed as a replacement for Xherdan Shaqiri.

Salah made his unofficial debut on 23 June 2012 against FCSB in a friendly match, where he scored, despite Basel suffering a 4–2 defeat. His official Basel debut took place in a UEFA Champions League preliminary stage match against the Norwegian club Molde on 8 August, entering as a substitute in the 74th minute. He played his first league match on 12 August against Thun, completing the full game.A week later, Salah netted his inaugural league goal, securing the second goal in a 2–0 home victory against Lausanne-Sport. On 11 April 2013, Salah scored his first UEFA Europa League goal in the quarter-finals, aiding Basel in advancing to the semi-finals by defeating Tottenham Hotspur 4–1 in a penalty shoot-out after a 4–4 aggregate draw. In the semi-final on 2 May, Salah scored an away goal against Chelsea, although Basel ultimately succumbed to a 5–2 aggregate defeat. Despite the European setback, Basel clinched the 2012–13 Swiss Super League title and secured the runner-up position in the Swiss Cup.


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