Manchester United and Arsenal paid a heavy price – quite literally – by buckling to the demands of David De Gea and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and look at how that has worked out. Liverpool also have the trump card of Klopp who, like Pep Guardiola at Manchester City, has skilfully navigated between giving the impression that no player is bigger than him, or the club, but also of making them still feel like world superstars.
No club should ever be in a position where they ‘cannot afford to lose’ any player. The greater concern for Liverpool has to be what happens when Klopp goes in 2024.
With Salah, Liverpool appear happy to wait it out. We do not know exactly how much they have offered but it clearly falls short of his demands. They know that age is against the player, who is 30 in June, even if Cristiano Ronaldo and Robert Lewandowski have recorded extraordinary numbers until well into their 30s. Salah could easily do the same.
But Liverpool also know the transfer market is in a very difficult place. Salah’s representatives may well be trying to interest Paris Saint-Germain in their client but PSG’s priority remains to persuade Kylian Mbappe to stay and with Lionel Messi and Neymar already on their books do they even want another, older forward? They will also be wary of being used in negotiations.