Premier League • England

Mo Salah looking to make up for lost time with remarkable Liverpool act after gruelling AFCON

Mohamed Salah has reportedly told Liverpool he wants to resume training on Tuesday as he looks to quickly forget his Africa Cup of Nations final heartbreak.

Salah saw Egypt’s hopes of glory on Sunday dashed by Anfield team-mate Sadio Mane, who scored the decisive penalty for Senegal in the shoot-out following a goalless draw in Cameroon.

While Mane travelled to his homeland to celebrate his country’s first-ever AFCON triumph, Salah headed back to Merseyside on Monday.

And according to a report in The Times has already declared his intention to resume training at the club’s Kirkby complex.

That would immediately put him in contention to face Leicester on Thursday evening.

However, Jurgen Klopp will be concerned about using the club’s top scorer straight away after his heavy workload over the last month.

Salah and Mane have not played for the Reds since their draw at Chelsea on January 2.

But each player featured seven times in Cameroon, although Salah played a gruelling 120 minutes four times in 12 days.

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Mane, meanwhile, is not expected back at the club until nearer to Thursday’s Leicester clash.

Senegal president Macky Sall is expected to meet the triumphant team in Dakar on Tuesday. He has also declared Monday a public holiday in honour of their AFCON triumph.

Brendan Rodgers is the favourite to be the next boss out of the door following Leicester’s cup humiliation

Arsenal star tipped as perfect Salah replacement

Meanwhile, Bukayo Saka has been told that he has all the “attributes and qualities” to replace Mohamed Salah at Liverpool, according to one pundit.

The former Arsenal academy star has been linked with moves to Liverpool and Manchester City, having made a big name for himself after breaking into the Gunners first-team, while also starring for England at Euro 2020.

The Premier League’s top two teams are ready to swoop for Saka if Mikel Arteta’s men fail to qualify for the Champions League for next season.

Bukayo Saka Arsenal

The 20-year-old has notched seven goals this season, just two behind top scorer Emile Smith Rowe. And there can be little argument that he has been the club’s best attacker this term.

Salah, meanwhile, has 18 months to run on his current deal and is yet to sign a new one. And Saka, whose own contract expires in 2024, has been tipped to fill the boots of the Reds’ talisman.

That is according to former Sunderland forward Kevin Phillips, speaking to Football Insider.

Saka can fill Salah’s boots

He said: “I think Saka will get better and better. He’s still a young kid, he’s done a lot already in his short career.

“I think he’s an unbelievable talent. I also think, moulded in the right way, he’ll turn out to be a top-class player.

“Whether he can go to Liverpool, if that was to happen, could he emulate what Salah’s done? It’d be very, very difficult for any player to do that.

“But he’s certainly got the attributes and qualities that he possibly could join Liverpool and replace Salah. Let’s not forget, Salah didn’t tear it up early on at Chelsea.

“For Saka, he’s developing all the time”.

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