EGYPTIAN International Mohamed Salah will not feature for his country in the third round group stage matches against Cape Verde, billed to be held on Monday, January 22, 2024, at the ongoing African Cup of Nations (AFCON).
Salah was injured in Egypt’s 2-2 draw with Ghana on Thursday in Group B.
Confirming his absence at the AFCON, the Egyptian Football Association had projected Salah’s return to the tournament would only be possible if his nation progressed to the quarter-final.
Also giving an update on the player’s injury on Sunday, January 21, Liverpool’s coach, Jurgen Klopp, confirmed that the Egyptian star would return to the club for medical attention.
“It makes sense that he’s doing rehab with us.
“I would say if Egypt qualifies for the final, if he’s fit before the final, then probably yes,” he said.
After Salah sustained the injury, Klopp hinted on Friday that the player’s hamstring problem was likely to be severe, owing to the forward’s injury history, which has led to missing just ten league games for the Reds in more than six seasons.
“He was shocked and couldn’t see why he was hit by something so intense.”
“You have these hamstring injuries in a different way. He felt it, and we know how rarely Mo goes off or needs to go off, so it is definitely something,” he said.
Among all the titles Salah had won, he is yet to win AFCON since he made his international debut in 2011- a year after his country won their seventh AFCON title.
Since then, he has finished with his country as runners-up in the 2017 and 2021 editions.
Despite this, Salah, who scored a late penalty to help Egypt draw 2-2 with Mozambique at the opening match of the ongoing tournament, is optimistic about winning the AFCON “sooner or later.”
“I would love to win it, absolutely,” he said. “It will happen somehow – that is what I believe. Whatever I believe, I achieve – so sooner or later, it will happen.
“I have won everything possible, but this one, not yet. Everybody knows what it means to any player to win an Africa Cup.
“The players are very motivated to win the tournament. I believe that, with hard work, everything is possible, so we just need to win one game to qualify, and we go from there,” he said.