Egypt forward Mohamed Salah says he is “confident” of playing in the World Cup after suffering a shoulder injury in the Champions League final defeat by Real Madrid.
Salah was forced off with a suspected dislocated shoulder in the first half of Liverpool’s Champions League final defeat to Real Madrid in Kiev, with initial fears he may miss the tournament in Russia.
But the player himself remains upbeat about his chances of being involved, tweeting: “It was a very tough night, but I’m a fighter.
“Despite the odds, I’m confident that I’ll be in Russia to make you all proud. Your love and support will give me the strength I need.”
The final was finely balanced at 0-0 when Salah was forced off after half an hour following a challenge from Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos.
Ramos momentarily broke away from his celebrations to send Salah a message on social media. The defender tweeted: “Sometimes football shows you it’s good side and other times the bad. Above all, we are fellow pros. #GetWellSoon @MoSalah”
Meanwhile, Liverpool full-back Andy Robertson has admitted that the loss of Mohamed Salah to a shoulder injury disrupted Liverpool’s rhythm and may have been the turning point in their defeat.
Asked whether he thought Salah’s withdrawal was the game’s turning point, Robertson said: “I think it could have been Mo, it could have been any of us. It just disrupted our rhythm a wee bit. Everyone looks because it is Mo Salah. He has done unbelievable this season and for it to end that way for him was devastating.”
The Egyptian Football Association is “optimistic” Mohamed Salah will be able to play in the World Cup, after he suffered what Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp called a “really serious injury.”
The Egyptian FA wrote on Twitter that the organisation was “optimistic” he could return for the World Cup, which starts in less than three weeks.
Egypt expect him to be sidelined for about two weeks, according to the Egyptian government’s minister of state for youth and sports, Khaled Abd Elaziz, who wrote on Facebook that Salah was still likely to be named in the team’s final squad, which will be announced June 4.
Salah, who boarded Liverpool’s team bus after the 3-1 defeat to Real Madrid with a sling on his left arm, will remain with Liverpool before joining up with his national team in Italy, the minister wrote.
“It’s a serious injury, a really serious injury,” Klopp said in his postmatch news conference. “He is in the hospital for an X-ray. It’s either the collarbone or the shoulder itself. It doesn’t look good, that’s it.”
This season, Salah has emerged as a top contender to rival Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo and Barcelona’s Lionel Messi for the Ballon d’Or and other player of the year awards after scoring 44 goals in all competitions.
He is far and away the biggest star in Egypt and key to the country’s hopes in Russia, and the injury may mean he is denied the chance to take part in the nation’s first World Cup since 1990.
At the 2018 World Cup, The Pharaohs appear in Group A alongside hosts Russia, Saudi Arabia and Uruguay.