Sunday Feb 11, 2024. 12:47
Egyptian football legend Ahmed ‘Mido’ Hossam believes Mohamed Salah doesn’t deserve to be the Pharaohs’ captain.
The 31-year-old world-class attacker was heavily criticised after leaving the Egypt camp in the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) to do his rehab at his English club Liverpool instead.
Mido, who scored 19 goals in 51 matches for Egypt, believes the whole issue took place in the first place as Salah doesn’t deserve the captaincy while comparing the role of the Liverpool star to that of Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.
“Is Messi as a leader for Argentina like Salah as a leader for Egypt? Salah is Egypt’s star, but does what he does with the national team resemble what Messi does with Argentina?” Mido asked when speaking on King Fut.
“Does Salah do what Ronaldo does with Portugal? Directing players in penalty kicks, saying who will take the shot and who will follow, and imposing his personality on everyone. Salah has evolved mentally, but he has never been a leader on the pitch, the evidence for that is why he didn’t get the captain’s armband at Liverpool?
“Ask yourself why Salah has never worn the captain’s armband for Liverpool. Don’t say it’s because he’s a foreign player, as this is not a factor in English football, and there is ample evidence.
“Salah was negatively affected by becoming the captain of Egypt. He would have had more freedom and less pressure if he remained without that armband,” the former Tottenham Hotspur and West Ham United striker continued.
“Some may accuse me of jealousy towards Salah, but those are a group of sick people. I cannot imagine Ahmed Fathi, with his value and great history, giving up the captain’s armband for Salah. It’s like Hossam Hassan relinquishing his role as captain for Ahmed Hassan. It’s hard to believe.
“These are red lines and a change in traditions followed for years, and comparisons shouldn’t be made with the cases of Messi and Ronaldo because the situation is completely different.
“The duo have completely different personalities and mentalities from Salah. If Salah were the captain of Liverpool, he wouldn’t have delivered the same strong performance. He is one of those players who find it difficult to bear the burden of captaincy,” the former Zamalek coach explained.
“Salah cannot wear the captain’s armband with Mohamed El-Shenawy and Ahmed Hegazi on the pitch. Hegazi, specifically, is the captain of Ittihad Jeddah, one of the oldest clubs in Saudi Arabia.”