Graeme Souness used the label “selfish”, but those working at Melwood prefer the description of “unrelenting” for Mohamed Salah.
Liverpool’s Egyptian forward is tireless when it comes to ticking off objectives, whether it be for the collective or on an individual level.
The latter only shifts the former out of the spotlight when the team have accomplished what they need to in a match or during a season.
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It also still drives the Premier League champions to elevated heights as his stirring performance in the 3-1 victory over Brighton showcased: two goals lifted Salah closer to another Golden Boot, but also furthered Liverpool’s ambition of surpassing the record points total in English top-flight history.
Before the 28-year-old arrived on Merseyside, the club’s analysis had revealed countless positive findings, but among the most important was his frightening consistency in goal involvements aligned with an unsparing desire to win, to be decisive, to be better.
When Salah moved to Anfield for £43.9m from Roma in June 2017, the overwhelming sentiment in England was that it was shed loads of money to spend on someone who failed at Chelsea.
But the confidence within Liverpool that he would be a sure-fire success overflowed – first because he was determined to, but also because their data revealed it was the Stamford Bridge side that faltered by not fully realising and unleashing his explosiveness.
Salah is a phenom: a cocktail of intelligent movement, frightening acceleration, unassuming strength and sublime vision. He filters the same desire into just knocking the ball into the net as he does with top-shelf finishes: he wants to win, to be decisive, to be better.
Salah’s assist count is often overlooked or criminally downplayed. Only Kevin De Bruyne and Trent Alexander-Arnold, chief playmakers for their teams, have managed more than him in the league this season.
For all the talk of his greed for goals – and he absolutely salivates over them – his creation is phenomenal.
He has been directly involved in 130 goals in 148 appearances across all competitions for Liverpool, with 36 of those being assists.
On Wednesday night, he joined an elite list for the club, becoming just the fourth player to reach a century of successful final-third involvements in the Premier League.
His split of 73 goals and 27 assists saw him move into a bracket with Steven Gerrard, Robbie Fowler and Michael Owen.
Salah’s numbers are extraordinary, and yet, he has made it the norm to the extent of not being properly appreciated for it.
He does not get the widespread adulation his contribution merits.
The figures Salah has managed to post since returning to England are barely believable and so perhaps unreal is the best label to affix to him.
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