Villarreal v Liverpool Semi Final Leg Two - UEFA Champions League


'I've never said this': Mohamed Salah shares the incredible target he set for himself to start this season

Mohamed Salah says he set himself an incredible target to start the season with Liverpool. The Egyptian certainly aims high.

Mohamed Salah didn’t get on the scoresheet as Liverpool beat Villarreal tonight but he did play his part in the turnaround. The Reds lost their two-goal advantage by half-time after a dreadful first 45 but saved things in the second.

And it was their Egyptian king who created their best chance. He slipped in Fabinho to fire home – the start of a mad 12 minutes that completely changed the tie. Luis Diaz and Sadio Mané added a couple more and Liverpool put themselves firmly into a third Champions League final in five years.

Salah joined the BT Sport panel after the game to talk about the Reds’ progression but it was a remark about his individual work that really raised eyebrows. The winger admits he’s actually falling short of his own targets this season.

“30 goals and 15 assists already, is that above or below what you were expecting?” asked Rio Ferdinand.

“Oh below,” said Salah, which actually drew laughter before everyone realised he was serious. “Yeah. I have big expectations for myself.

“Honestly, I’ve never said this but before the season started, I go for 40 this season. 10 assists, 15 assists. I need to focus on the goals now!”

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The fact that Salah can set a target like that and get remotely close is ridiculously impressive, of course. In all truth, he will fall just short of 40 goals after an uncharacteristically goal-dry spell for him.

Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images

But his unbelievably good record to start the season did most of the work towards his targets. It’s form that won him the FWA Football of the Year award – Liverpool don’t even come close to success this season without Salah’s efforts.

And hey, if he does manage to hit 40, it almost guarantees more silverware this season. Whether he does or not, though, Salah has more than played his part in this incredible season.

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