Scouting Liverpool Transfer Target Mohamed Salah

Max Munton@thisisanfieldLiverpool CorrespondentDecember 20, 2013

BASEL, SWITZERLAND - OCTOBER 4:  Mohamed Salah of FC Basel 1893 in action during the UEFA Europa League group stage match between FC Basel 1893 and KRC Genk held on October 4, 2012 at the St. Jakob-Park in Basel, Switzerland. (Photo by Sebastien Feval/EuroFootball/Getty Images)
EuroFootball/Getty Images

If Mohamed Zika’s comments on the Egyptian television program Kora Kol Yoam, via KingFut.com, are to be believed, it is “99%” certain that Basel’s Mohamed Salah will join Liverpool in January.

The first inkling of speculation came when Brendan Rodgers was spotted at Schalke vs. Basel in the Champions League last Wednesday, according to Neil Ashton in the Daily Mail.

However, the English press put two and two together and came up with German international midfielder Julian Draxler as the object of Rodgers’ desires. 

It wasn’t until last weekend that the penny dropped, and Simon Jones of the Daily Mail announced Liverpool were set to bid for Salah—the Egyptian Messi: "Basel are now ready to sell their prized asset and want around £15m for a player who has been dubbed ‘the Egyptian Messi’ following his goals return of 17 in 26 internationals."

Now every time Liverpool are linked with a new player, it turns out the Reds’ fanbase is full of experts of the more obscure leagues in European football. 

Last summer when Liverpool were chasing Henrikh Mkhitaryan of Shakhtar Donetsk, everyone was an expert in the Ukrainian Premier League.

That was followed by the club’s pursuit of Willian—and suddenly everyone became a football guru of the Russian Premier League.

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The same has happened this time. How fans find the time to watch the Swiss Super League as well is amazing. 

Nevertheless, Salah looks like an exciting prospect and a useful option to bolster Liverpool’s attack. 

At just 21 years old, he’s already won 27 caps for Egypt, scoring 17 goals in that time.

In the Champions League this season for Basel, Salah has scored twice and created seven chances in six games, according to Squawka.

In Switzerland, he has scored four goals in 18 games so far this season, according to Goal.com.

He possesses pace, skill and intelligence on the ball, predominantly playing on the right wing.

Ross Dunbar of the Mirror neatly gave a summary of Salah's strengths back in November:

Despite playing notably wider than most attacking forwards – those who aren’t wingers – he has the intelligence to find space, while playing in an inverted style on to his left-foot, and he is willing to come out wide to get the ball.

Salah is a very quick runner off the ball, but he’s yet to convert that extra yard of pace into his game when in possession.

But sharp decision-making and movement is key to the Egyptian’s overall game and Salah has superb composure in-front of goal.

He rarely does boring tap-ins either, finishing intricate moves with conviction and as seen against Chelsea, he's especially clinical when presented with a chance on his left-side.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 23:  Victor Moses of Liverpool in action during the Barclays Premier League match between Everton and Liverpool at Goodison Park on November 23, 2013 in Liverpool, England.  (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

The decision to spend £12 million on an attacking midfielder may surprise Liverpool fans—with problem areas of the free-scoring team seemingly more urgent at full-back.

However, the pursuit of Salah may be an indication as to Brendan Rodgers’ plans for Victor Moses—or lack of plans.

The on-loan Chelsea attacker hasn’t started since Liverpool’s 3-1 defeat at Hull at the beginning of December, and the signing of Salah would surely push him further down the pecking order.

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