What a difference a month can make! This time last month, Mohamed Salah was waiting to play in a Champions League final after which he would lead his country's charge at FIFA World Cup. The world seemed to be at his feet for EPL's top scorer but unfortunately for him, everything seems to have gone horribly wrong.
His time at Chelsea was forgettable but his second coming to England was turning out to be prolific. In his first season with Liverpool, he had already broken the record for the maximum leagues in a season with 32 strikes. With 10 Champions League goals, he was on 43 goals for the season and looked ready for the European final!
Things went from bad to worse for Salah in the match in Kiev. First, a foul by Sergio Ramos resulted in a shoulder injury that ended his role in the final and also put his World Cup participation in doubt. To add insult to injury, Liverpool were humbled 3-1 by a rampant Real Madrid side that won their third Champions League title on the trot.
A promising club season had ended in despair without a trophy, and now the shoulder injury put his World Cup hopes in jeopardy. After everything he did to help Egypt book their place in Russia, it would've been a pity if their talisman was missing from the mega event. After three and a half weeks of rigorous rehabilitation, he was declared fit enough to play.
But he wasn't match fit to play Egypt's opening game against Uruguay. He had to watch from the sidelines as the Africans fell to a 1-0 defeat against the South Americans.
Thankfully, Salah was primed and ready for the second game against Russia. The hosts were in red-hot form, having thrashed Saudi Arabia 5-0 in the World Cup opener. The proceedings did not go according to the script for Salah and his countrymen endured another miserable evening.
The Russians were rampant, scoring three goals. Mohamed Salah did manage a consolatory penalty for Egypt but it was a little too late. The Africans are all but out of the 2018 World Cup and it will take a miracle of monumental proportions if they are to qualify. Salah's promising summer is in tatters.
Had he scored in the Champions League final or won it and then shone at the World Cup with a couple of goals, he would even have been in contention for the Ballon d'Or. Instead, Mohamed Salah will now have to spend the rest of the summer wondering what might have been. What a terrible way for a dream to die!
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