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‘He’s a constant threat’: youthful Salah keeps getting better, says Klopp

Jürgen Klopp has claimed Mohamed Salah has a physique that belies his years and an influence that continues to grow on and off the pitch at Liverpool.

The phenomenal Salah set yet another record on Thursday when scoring the 43rd European goal of his Liverpool career in the 5-1 rout of Toulouse. He is now the all-time leading goalscorer in European competitions for an English club.

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Klopp says the 31-year-old has changed his game since the arrival of Darwin Núñez and departure of Roberto Firmino. The success of the adaptation, he insists, is testament to Salah’s world-class talent.

“He has been the man for us for a long time now,” the Liverpool manager said. “But he is growing in the role he has for us in football and maybe in general to show that on top level it is nice to enjoy the moment and then you go again. That is what he is doing.

“The young Mo was a super-fast player who could run in behind and play a role together with [Edin] Dzeko [at Roma]. From the first day here he had to do different things, he adapted extremely well, but the playmaker in that front row was probably more Bobby Firmino and you don’t need then two players who are deeper. Now it is slightly different – especially when Darwin is playing we have another speed player up there – so that changed Mo’s position. He is smart enough to adapt to all these things and there has been a massive development since he arrived. He was, in all phases, world class and that is probably the best thing you can say about a player.”

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Klopp added: “We appreciate him and everyone will appreciate him even more after his career because then you will say: ‘Wow, we saw something really special.’”

Despite strong interest in Salah from Saudi Arabia that will not go away, Klopp believes the Egypt international can continue to flourish at a higher level with Liverpool for several more years. “Off the pitch he behaves as a grown man, beyond that he is still a young player,” Klopp said. “He is top fit. I think if we were to scan him the majority of the bones would be aged 19 or 20! He just keeps himself in such good shape.

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“With Mo it is clear he understands the spaces much better, he knows how players react around him and, if he cannot score, he can still be a threat for us. Being constantly a threat is as important for us because that really opens up spaces for all the other boys. I cannot compare Mo to other 30-year-olds because I don’t think biologically he is!”