Mohamed Salah: Egypt FA say Liverpool reject forward’s call-up for World Cup qualifier over Covid risk

The first international break of the season is already posing issues for Premier League teams

Karl Matchett
Monday 23 August 2021 12:25

The Egyptian FA have released a statement saying Liverpool have rejected a call-up for Mohamed Salah for the forthcoming World Cup qualifiers due to concerns over Covid.

Last season saw several players across Europe’s major league miss matches after international duty, having tested positive while away for their national teams.

This time around Liverpool’s decision appears to be more administrative in nature, with Goal’s Neil Jones reporting that the Reds are reluctant to release Salah for only one of the two planned qualifiers, as Egypt is a red list country for travelling back to England.

As such, Salah would need to quarantine upon his return, meaning he would miss matches for the Premier League club.

Egypt face Angola on home soil on 2 September in their opening group stage qualifier, before playing Gabon away from home three days later.

Reports say Salah would be free to play in that fixture, as Gabon remains on the amber list for travel back to England.

Jones further clarifies that Liverpool’s stance would be the same for any player asked to travel to a red-list country which would mean quarantine upon their return.

The list at present includes Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Peru - suggesting the Reds’ South American contingent of Alisson Becker, Fabinho and Roberto Firmino may all similarly see call-ups rejected.

Those three Selecao players are regulars in the squad and Brazil play Chile away, before home qualifiers against Argentina and Peru in the forthcoming international break.

Elsewhere in the Premier League, Manchester City pair Gabriel Jesus and Ederson, Chelsea’s Thiago Silva, Man United’s Fred and Everton’s Richarlison are Brazil regulars, while Leeds winger Raphinha is also a potential addition to the squad.

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