Mohamed Salah could quit international football after being upset by being used for political gain during the FIFA World Cup.
The 2018 World Cup was meant to be a stage for Mohamed Salah to confirm his place in the upper echelon of world football after an incredible debut season with Liverpool.
After scoring 44 goals for the Reds last season, the Egyptian was a player many were very excited about seeing in action in Russia but a serious shoulder injury suffered in the first half of the Champions League final caused him to miss the opening game of the World Cup.
Egypt striker Amr Gamal said that Salah’s injury “killed” their chances of success and now the Liverpool striker could quit international football due to his fury at being used for political gain during the tournament.
Reports from Egypt suggest that Salah is angered by how his influence and public image have been used to help further certain parties’ political agendas.
“He has been hurt by the criticism he’s received after being pictured with controversial Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov, who stands accused of numerous human rights violations,” writes the Liverpool Echo’s James Pearce.
“Salah was granted honorary Chechen citizenship by Kadyrov at a banquet held to say goodbye to the squad on Friday night.”
The forward is upset at being used in non-football matters that neither help him as a player or Egypt’s chances of success in international football.
Salah was embroiled in a personal image rights debacle with the Egyptian FA before the tournament in Russia began and is apparently considering retiring from international football.
In contrast to the reports, Egyptian FA board member Essam Abdel Fattah claims there is no truth to suggestions Salah is close to quitting.
“This is a big lie,” he told Goal when asked about claims Salah could quit. “Nothing like this is true and I wonder how CNN are reporting these things.”
When asked for his thoughts on the controversy surrounding meetings with Kadyrov, he added: “I don’t understand this. We’re guests in this man’s land and he invited us for a dinner. We can’t refuse something like that and this is very normal.
“[Critics] are mixing politics and sports? We’re a sports team and nothing can involve us in politics.
“I’m sick of all these rumours around our team. Today it was also said that an EFA member’s son was selling a ticket illegally…these are silly things and still lies.”