Mohamed Salah has been honored by the Egyptian Football Association for his historic role in Egyptian football being the first Egyptian player to win the English Premier League and the UEFA Champions League.
The Liverpool forwards was called up by Egypt head coach Hossam El-Badry for the Pharaohs upcoming two commitments against Togo in the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers.
The Pharaohs have had a disappointing start in the 2021 AFCON qualifiers as they were drawn in Group G along with Kenya, Togo, and Comoros.
With two successive draws against Kenya and Comoros in November of last year, Egypt find themselves placed third in the group after two matches.
Salah Honored in Egypt
Taking advantage of the occasion, the EFA decided to honour the 28-year-old hero, who expressed his joy for receiving this recognition from his homeland, while also casting his thoughts on the CAF Champions League final between Al Ahly and Zamalek.
“It’s a great thing to be honoured in my country. Since I was a child I wanted to improve and to become better,” Salah said.
“I was inspired by plenty of players but above all I was inspired by Zidane, Ronaldo Nazario, Luis Figo and Francesco Totti. When I played with Totti I felt that I fulfilled one of my dreams.”
“There are also many figures from Egypt that have inspired me. Of course Mahmoud El-Khatib is one of these names. Also my previous coach Diaa El-Sayed.”
Al Ahly and Zamalek are set to face each other on November 27 for Africa’s most prestigious title on club level, and Salah had an advice for the two clubs’ fans.
“Al Ahly and Zamalek playing the final is a great thing. My recommendation for the fans is to not drift behind anything that is not football-related and to just enjoy the game. We host the final and it’s something that doesn’t happen often.”
“The qualification of Al Ahly, Zamalek and Pyramids to African competitions’ finals will definitely have a positive impact on the national team.”
“Egypt’s former generation won three consecutive AFCON titles and we didn’t get to play with most of them and this affected our team. I hope we can improve and with the support of the fans we will become better,” he added.
Egypt will face Togo on Saturday, November 14, before going to Lome to face Togo once again on Tuesday, November 17.