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Mohamed Salah has said it is “a happy day for everyone” after finally committing his future to Liverpool by signing a new three-year contract that makes him the highest-paid player in the club’s history.
Protracted negotiations with the 30-year-old’s representative had failed to find a breakthrough until recent days, with a Liverpool delegation led by the new sporting director, Julian Ward, flying to see Salah while he was on holiday this week to seal the deal.
It is understood that Liverpool have agreed to pay Salah about £350,000 a week, although the new contract includes a number of performance-related clauses that mean the forward will be rewarded according to the number of goals he scores or is involved in.
“I feel great and [I am] excited to win trophies with the club,” Salah told Liverpool’s website. “It’s a happy day for everyone. It takes a little bit of time, I think, to renew, but now everything is done so we just need to focus on what’s next.
“You can see in the last five or six years the team was always going [upwards]. Last season we were close to winning four, but unfortunately in the last week of the season we lost two trophies.
“I think we are in a good position to fight for everything. We have new signings as well. We just need to keep working hard, have a good vision, be positive and go for everything again.”
Salah won his third Golden Boot in five seasons since joining from Roma in 2017 as Liverpool were pipped to the Premier League title by Manchester City by a point and has scored 156 times in 254 appearances. He had previously said he would stay at the club next season, raising the possibility he would then leave on a free transfer.
Although the Egyptian did not immediately commit to a new deal, it is understood there was a longstanding commitment between both parties to reach an agreement – especially after Sadio Mané’s departure for Bayern Munich. Salah’s contract expires in 2025, just after he turns 33, and his best years are to come, according to Jürgen Klopp.
“It’s the best decision for us and best decision for him,” the manager said. “He belongs with us I think. This is his club now. Of course it has taken a little time but that’s absolutely OK and the best things are always worth waiting for anyway. Mo is one of the best players in the world; it’s only normal there are things to sort when you are at his level. So big credit to Julian Ward and Mike Gordon [the president of Liverpool’s owner, Fenway Sports Group] for guiding us to this destination.”
Klopp added: “I have no doubt Mo’s best years are still to come. And that’s saying something, because the first five seasons here have been the stuff of legend. Fitness-wise, he’s a machine – in the most incredible shape. He works hard on it and he gets his rewards. His ability and his skill level gets higher each season, and his decision-making has gone to another level also.”
Salah won player of the year awards from the Football Writers’ Association and Professional Footballers’ Association last season and is Liverpool’s ninth-highest goalscorer. But he said last month that he was “shocked” after finishing seventh in the 2021 Ballon d’Or ranking despite another stellar season.
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Emulating George Weah – the only African player to have won the accolade – remains a major incentive for Salah, who will lead a rejuvenated attack in the absence of his long-term foil Mané, with Liverpool having brought in Darwin Núñez from Benfica as a replacement.
“I am so excited, I want to play with him,” Salah said of the Uruguay forward. “He had a good season and played good against us, home and away. Also, Sadio has left and I am going to miss him. He had great seasons with the club, so I wish him all the best. I wish Darwin all the best too to score many goals for us.”