'Salah maybe stays - because that's the most sensible move'

Former Everton midfielder Leon Osman believes that a culmination of things involving Liverpool and Mohamed Salah has made the whole situation "very intense".

Speaking on BBC Radio 5 Live's Monday Night Club, Osman said: "This spat [against West Ham] has been a terrible timing for the whole situation Liverpool are in.

"With them falling out of the title race, with Jurgen Klopp leaving in the summer, with the potential of Mo Salah leaving."

New York Times journalist Rory Smith said: "Regardless of what happened - with Klopp, with the new manager, with the title race and with the four trophies - there would have been a conversation over whether this would be Salah's last season anyway.

"The big problem for everyone involved is: if I'm Mo Salah, who is 31 and in very good nick, do I want to go to Saudi Arabia? Probably not.

"It was different last summer when that first wave of players went. They could pretend it was exciting and new and they were building the game in one of its great frontier lands.

"If you're an athlete who thinks of themselves at the absolute peak of their powers, I'm not sure whether you go [now].

"If Salah doesn't go to Saudi Arabia, I don't entirely know where he does go."

The Egypt forward's contract runs out in the summer of 2025, when he will be 33, and Smith added: "Salah maybe stays - because that's the most sensible move. He won't feel as though he's ready to go to Saudi Arabia."

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