Football

Murphy: Salah is currently the EPL's best player

Former Liverpool player Murphy believes there is currently no one better than Salah in the Premier League

The Premier League's top scorer Mohamed Salah wrapped up his noteworthy November yesterday morning (Singapore time) with a brace against Stoke City to take his tally for the month to nine goals.

The Egyptian came off the bench for Dominic Solanke on 67 minutes with Liverpool 1-0 up courtesy of Sadio Mane's 17th-minute opener at the Britannia and duly made the game safe with strikes in the 77th and 83rd minutes.

The 25-year-old's first was a left-foot volley from a Mane cross that gave Stoke goalkeeper Lee Grant no chance. He followed that up by capitalising on Erik Pieters' weak back pass to double his tally and seal the game for the Reds.

With 17 goals for Liverpool since his £36.9 million (S$66.5m) move from Roma in June, Salah's manager Juergen Klopp summed it up best when he said: "Thank God Salah keeps scoring.

"It's good. It was difficult for all the players coming on in these (cold) temperatures.

"Sitting on the bench is not too nice, but it worked really well with two fantastic goals."

Reds defender Joe Gomez said the fact Liverpool could leave the league's leading hitman (12 goals) on the bench and save him for a deadly cameo is testament to the depth in Klopp's ranks.

He told Liverpool's official website: "It shows the depth of this squad. He's in amazing form and the goals he brings to the team are massive for us."

GAME-CHANGER

Goalkeeper Simon Mignolet, meanwhile, lauded Salah's ability as a game-changer, telling Liverpool's official website: "He played a lot of minutes and (that's why the manager) took him out, but he comes on and he can change the game for us as well."

Former Liverpool and England midfielder Danny Murphy went a step further, calling the wide forward the Premier League's best player at the moment.

He told the BBC: "Unbelievable. He's obviously playing better than anybody else in the Premier League at the moment in some respects.

"What a pass it was from Mane (for Salah's first goal) and what a volley. That's a confident man, a really confident player...

"Then he makes the one-on-one look easy a few minutes later."

A September study by the CIES Football Observatory concluded that the 25-year-old was the most undervalued signing during the summer transfer window, estimating that he was worth around twice as much as Liverpool paid for his services.

Reds legend Mark Lawrenson seems to agree, saying ahead of yesterday's match that Salah was the signing of the season.

Former Cameroon and Arsenal fullback Lauren, meanwhile, looked to the future, suggesting that the Egyptian has the potential to become the Premier League's best ever African player.

He told Omnisport: "Salah could be the best - he's still young and he's playing with such a great team in Liverpool.

"He could be, why not?

"To be honest, I have some doubts that he can pass (Didier) Drogba. He was one of the best African players in the Premier League."

Ivory Coast legend Drogba scored 104 goals over two spells with Chelsea. Salah has a long way to go to match that tally, but his 17 goals in all competitions is an impressive start.

But former Arsenal and England striker Ian Wright believes that even if Salah continues his hot streak, he will never match the impact of the Luis Suarez on Merseyside.

He told the BBC: "Even if he sustains it, he won't be Suarez."

Salah might not be Suarez, but former Liverpool and England defender Jamie Carragher believes the 25-year-old can the Premier League's most prolific ever wide player.

He told Sky Sports: "You think of the great goalscoring winger, if he stays here three or four seasons, he will eclipse them all.

"You think of (Freddie) Ljungberg, (Robert) Pires and (Ryan) Giggs. Those wide players who always make those runs across the defensive line." - WIRE SERVICES

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