Mohamed Salah’s total loss of form at the worst time is a real worry for Jurgen Klopp and Liverpool

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In a game dominated by a flurry of first half substitutions, one could quite feasibly ask why Mohamed Salah never came on at any point for Liverpool against Manchester United.

For the fourth time in five games, Liverpool been held to a draw, and for the fourth time in five games, Salah has been near-invisible, failing to score or assist a goal.

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The Egypt international did manage to bag in that 3-0 win over Bournemouth, the only anomaly in this run, but it’s more than just the goals that have dried up from last season’s PFA Player of the Year and Golden Boot winner.

Perhaps unable to respond to the incredibly high standards he set in his first campaign at Anfield, Salah has rather shockingly failed to score in any of the following big games this season:

Having strengthened his defence so impressively with the signings of Virgil van Dijk and Alisson, Jurgen Klopp must be cursing this rotten luck in Salah’s turnaround in form.

Had LFC been able to mix the form of their attack last season with the form of their defence this term, they’d be running away with the title. Instead, it is now genuinely starting to run away from them.

Much has been made of the added title pressure at Anfield this season – with every game mattering that minute more, some of the freedom to their attacking play has clearly gone, with Salah perhaps the biggest victim.

Of course, the early injury to Roberto Firmino won’t have helped matters against United today, with Daniel Sturridge not contributing enough in his place, while Sadio Mane also had a quiet game.

But, according to stats from WhoScored, Salah finished with just one shot and one dribble in the whole game today. Additional stats from Statman Dave show that means he’s not registered a shot on target in either of his trips to Old Trafford. He’s also failed to score or assist in any of his four games against Man Utd. Almost more worryingly from watching him today, he just looks like a man sapped of all confidence in what he’s doing.

It now has to be advantage Manchester City in the title race, which can perhaps relieve Liverpool of some pressure for the final months of the season, or at least allow them to focus on winning the Champions League that they were so unlucky to miss out on last year.

Salah’s lack of big-game impact, however, raises serious questions for the future – with Klopp in need of players not just of elite talent, but of elite mentality, to finally deliver that long-awaited league title.

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