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LONDON, July 14, 2018 (News Wires) - Liverpool have boosted their attacking options with the signing of Switzerland forward Xherdan Shaqiri from Stoke City on a long-term contract, the Premier League club said.

The details of the deal were not disclosed but local media said Shaqiri had joined on a five-year contract after Liverpool paid his 13.5 million pounds ($17.86 million) release clause.

“It’s a huge club with big history, big players and a fantastic coach (Juergen Klopp). So I’m really glad and happy to be here," Shaqiri, 26, said on the Anfield club's website Liverpoolfc.com.

Shaqiri started all of Switzerland's games at this year's World Cup, where they lost to Sweden in the last 16, and has scored 21 goals in 74 games for his country, including a last-minute winner against Serbia in the group stage in Russia.

The talented Swiss playmaker is Liverpool's third signing in the transfer window so far after the arrival of AS Monaco midfielder Fabinho and Naby Keita from RB Leipzig.

“...he (Shaqiri) is someone who makes a big difference to the squad and team, because he can fit in so many positions in oursystem. He gives us greater flexibility in how we can use our current players also," said Klopp.

Shaqiri began his career with FC Basel and joined Bayern Munich in 2012, spending 2- 1/2 years at the Bundesliga giants before a six-month spell with Inter Milan.

He won league titles in Switzerland and Germany plus the Champions League with Bayern in 2013.

“I know him well from his time in Switzerland and especially Germany – I have been a
long-time admirer," added Klopp.

"But the added bonus now is that he knows the Premier League and what it takes to perform in this uniquely intense environment. He also did really well at the World Cup – so he comes to us full of belief and confidence."

Shaqiri joined Stoke in 2013 and scored 15 goals in 84 league games over three seasons at the Midlands outfit, who were relegated from the top flight last season.

“As a player you always want to be on the biggest stage in football. A few years ago I wanted to come too but it didn’t happen," added Shaqiri, who was linked with Liverpool in 2014 when Bayern reportedly blocked a move.

"I’m really happy that now I’m finally here. I want to improve myself too, I want to be with the best and I want to win titles. That’s what I’m here for.”

Mo in the movies?

By Ramadan A. Kader

Liverpool marksman Mohamed Salah has captured local and foreign headlines in recent weeks. The circumstances of his first World Cup appearance and the Pharaohs’ miserable performances in Russia provided gristle to the news mills.

The Pharaohs’ star striker looked sad during the global tournament despite the fact that he was the one who had netted Egypt’s only two goals in their three matches.

The Egyptian Football Association (EFA) was accused of politically exploiting Salah in much-hyped photo sessions with Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov in Grozny, which was the Pharaohs’ base camp. Kadyrov gave Salah honorary citizenship at a large banquet. The West charges Chechen authorities with human rights abuses, accusations that Grozny denies.

EFA President Hany Abu Reeda last week denied any political manipulation of Salah and said that Grozny was selected by the erstwhile Argentine Hector Cuper despite being far away from venues of the Egyptian squad’s games.

Abu Reeda accused the British media of creating what he termed as the alleged crisis of Salah’s political exploitation.

Salah has kept silent amid the entire row. He is currently on holiday before joining
Liverpool training sessions for the new season.

The 26-year-old professional is poised to make his debut as an actor, according to an Egyptian newspaper.

Salah has received an offer from Egyptian actor Youssef el-Sherif to appear in the second sequel of his film “The International Prof”, Al Watan said.

El-Sherif made the offer during a visit to Salah and was able to convince the football icon of appearing in five scenes, the paper added, citing an unnamed member of the film crew.

“Salah has accepted the offer and left the details for his agent Rami Abbas to sort out with the producing company,” the source said.

“Salah and Youssef met more than once in London and are set to meet again during Salah’s current holiday in Cairo,” the source added.

In 2009, el-Sherif starred in the first part of “Al Alami” (The International Prof), which is set in the realm of world football. In the film, he portrayed an Egyptian professional, who leads Egypt to the World Cup.

The storyline incredibly echoes Salah’s successful effort in last October when he sent Egypt to the competition with a double against Congo in their thrilling World Cup qualifier. That match ended in a 2-1 victory for Egypt.

Salah, a native of a small village in Egypt’s Nile Delta, is riding a wave of popularity in the homeland not only because of his on-pitch brilliance but due to his characteristic humility as well.

He is one of very few players in the national team who have been spared Egyptians’ fury over the Pharaohs’ abysmal showing at the World Cup and their humiliating exit.
Last week, hundreds of fans flocked to a villa where Salah was staying on the outskirts of Cairo after the address of his private residence was leaked online.

The devoted congregation showered him with praise. He acknowledged the gesture with his trademark modesty and ready smile.

 

 

LONDON, July 2, 2018 (News Wires) - Egyptian international Mohamed Salah has set his sights on silverware at Liverpool after signing a new five-year deal with the Reds.

In a message recorded for the club's social media channels, Salah said: "Hello to Liverpool fans, I am very happy to say I have signed a new contract with the club.

“My first year at the club was an incredible experience for me and my family. I have to thank everyone at Liverpool and also you, our supporters.

“I know we can achieve a lot of things together (and) I’m looking forward to seeing you. See you soon.”

The financial terms were not disclosed.

Salah's signing of a new long-term contract is a major boost for Liverpool's ambitions of delivering trophies, said manager Jurgen Klopp on Monday.

Klopp added the fact the 26-year-old striker -- who scored 44 goals in just 52 appearances last season -- had signed such a deal reflected his belief the club were on course for a successful era.

Salah's goals, after joining last year from Italian outfit AS Roma for an initial £37 million ($48.7 million), played a large part in Liverpool reaching the Champions League final against Real Madrid.

"(The new contract) demonstrates two things very clearly -- his belief in Liverpool and our belief in him," Klopp told the Liverpool website Monday.

"I think this news can be seen for what it is; rewarding a person who performed and contributed greatly for the team and the club last season," said Klopp.

"We want world-class talent to see they have a home at Anfield where they can fulfil all their professional dreams and ambitions - we are working hard together to achieve this.

"When someone like Salah commits and says this place is my home now, it speaks very loudly I think.

"Equally, our commitment to him says we see his value and want him to grow even more and get even better within our environment."

LONDON, July 2, 2018 (News Wires) - Egyptian international Mohamed Salah’s signing of a new long-term contract is a major boost for Liverpool’s ambitions of delivering trophies, said manager Jurgen Klopp on Monday.

Klopp added the fact the 26-year-old striker - who scored 44 goals in just 52 appearances last season - had signed such a deal reflected his belief the club were on course for a successful era.

Liverpool have been praised for their free-flowing style of football under Klopp, but the fact remains the charismatic German has taken them to three finals in his tenure and fallen short on each occasion.

Salah’s goals, after joining last year from Italian outfit AS Roma for an initial £37 million, played a large part in Liverpool reaching the Champions League final against Real Madrid.

However, that proved a rare sour note for the player as Salah was slammed to the turf by Real Madrid’s Sergio Ramos, causing a painful separation of his left shoulder.

“(The new contract) demonstrates two things very clearly - his belief in Liverpool and our belief in him,” Klopp told the Liverpool website.

“I think this news can be seen for what it is; rewarding a person who performed and contributed greatly for the team and the club last season,” said Klopp.

“We want world-class talent to see they have a home at Anfield where they can fulfil all their professional dreams and ambitions – we are working hard together to achieve this.

“When someone like Mo Salah commits and says this place is my home now, it speaks very loudly I think.

“Equally, our commitment to him says we see his value and want him to grow even more and get even better within our environment.”

Salah’s exploits both for Liverpool and Egypt - in inspiring them to their first World Cup finals since 1990 - brought him several awards including African player of the year.

However, Klopp said the refreshing thing about Salah is that he is a team man through and through which will make progressing and winning trophies easier.

“The key thing to remember is the best thing about Mo is that he never sees himself as being more important than the team or anyone else within it,” said Klopp.

“He recognises his teammates and this club helped him achieve individual success last season. He sees the individual awards come because he is part of something bigger that is special.”

Klopp - who is taking charge of his first day’s pre-season training including Guinean arrival Naby Keita signed last year but under the agreement remained with his German club RB Leipzig - said the club needed to answer their fans demands for continual progress.

“Mo reflects where we are as a team, I think,” said Klopp.

“Last season was special with many special moments - but we want more. We want to be more successful and achieve more together – as the supporters sang so loudly, ‘we’re never gonna stop’.

“This has to be the attitude individually and collectively.”

Salah registered the second-highest total of goals in a season in Liverpool’s history, just three behind Ian Rush’s record of 47 and surpassing Roger Hunt’s haul of 42.

Thirty-two of those came in the Premier League, setting a new record in a 38-game season and earning him the Golden Boot.

Salah was named as both the PFA Players’ Player of the Year and the Football Writers’ Association’s Footballer of the Year for his efforts in 2017-18.

LIVERPOOL, England, July 2, 2018 (News Wires) - English Premier League top scorer Mohamed Salah has signed a new five-year contract with Liverpool. The Egyptian forward signed the deal a year after arriving at Liverpool from Roma, and as he tries to recover from a disastrous six-week period including injury and World Cup elimination. 

The new contract comes without a release clause.

Liverpool coach Juergen Klopp said the new contract for Salah was a sign of the club's ambition. "We want world-class talent to see they have a home at Anfield where they can fulfil all their professional dreams and ambitions - we are working hard together to achieve this," he said in a club statement Monday.

"When someone like Mo Salah commits and says this place is my home now, it speaks very loudly."

Financial terms were not disclosed.

Salah scored 44 goals from 52 games for Liverpool last season in all competitions, including 32 goals in the Premier League.

The 26-year-old netted 32 times in the Premier League, breaking the record for the most goals scored in a 38-game season, and helped the Merseyside club to a fourth-place finish.

However, he lasted just half an hour into Liverpool's Champions League final against Real Madrid before being forced off with an injured shoulder following a challenge from Madrid's Sergio Ramos. Liverpool lost 3-1.

That injury hampered Salah throughout Egypt's first World Cup campaign since 1990, which ended with defeat in all three games.

LONDON, June 23, 2018 (News Wires) - Liverpool and Egypt's forward Mohamed Salah is helping to break down Islamophobia in his adopted home, according to the Mayor of Liverpool City Region Steve Rotheram.

The Egypt international had a huge impact on the field in his debut season at Anfield, scoring 44 goals as the team finished fourth in the Premier League and were Champions League runners-up.

But his influence was felt just as significantly off it as a high-profile Muslim, energising the local Arabic community and helping improve inclusivity.

“I think what Salah’s done is what John Barnes did for the black community in the ‘80s,” Rotheram told a BBC Radio 5 Live documentary Mo Salah: Football is Life.

“He’s starting to break down barriers. Some of them (Liverpool fans) probably don’t fully appreciate the songs they sing about Mo Salah but to have that breakdown of Islamophobia caused by one person is an absolutely phenomenal achievement.

“His legacy will be much more about what’s happened off the field as well as what’s happened on the pitch.”

Eleven-year-old Rawan Zadeh, the daughter of a British Iraqi, for example, was inspired to take up football, having never played before, because of the Egyptian.

“My daughter wasn’t a football fan but now she is a fan of Mohamed Salah and his team,” Rawan’s mum Malath Ali said.

“She has changed completely and started playing football as well at school as a result.

“I’ve always encouraged her to play any kind of sport, it doesn’t matter if you are wearing a (head) scarf, so now she likes to play football.

“I feel as if he has an influence on the kids.”

Zane Abdo, Muslim adviser and chaplain to the University of Liverpool and Liverpool John Moores University, has seen how Salah has changed perceptions.

“It is like what Muhammad Ali did in the boxing world, albeit very different people, in terms of getting people to accept who he is and accept the name,” he told Press Association Sport.

“Mohamed Ali and Mohamed Salah – and Mo Farah – have all done that. It challenges a lot of the stereotypes.”

 

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