Football

Salah happy to win EPL over Champions League

Reds star willing to 'sacrifice' his dream, but Klopp upbeat about reaching last 8

Winning the Champions League may be his dream, but Mohamed Salah revealed that he is willing to sacrifice that to end Liverpool's 29-year wait for the English top-flight title.

The Egyptian, who was speaking in his native Arabic tongue, was sharing his thoughts on the English Premiership title race on Sky Sports.

ROUND OF 16, 2ND LEG
BAYERN MUNICH LIVERPOOL

With eight games to go, Liverpool are just one point behind leaders and defending champions Manchester City.

Said Salah: "Of course the competition is very tough and every team will drop points, but it will be difficult to catch up.

"Now there are eight games left of the season, we have difficult games to go, but so do City.

"All you can do is win your games and hopefully they will fail in one so we can win the title.

"I will be honest with you, the most prestigious competition for me is the Champions League, but the dream for the entire city and the club is the league.

"So I am happy to sacrifice my dream for their dream but, if we win both, it would be great and this is what we are trying to do.

"But I will be happy to win the league over the Champions League."

Salah netted an incredible 44 goals last term in what was his debut campaign for the Reds.

But his first year at Anfield ended in heartbreak as Juergen Klopp's side were beaten 3-1 by Real Madrid in the Champions League final in Kiev, with their star man suffering a shoulder injury following a robust challenge from Sergio Ramos which left him struggling to be fit for Egypt in the World Cup.

The question of whether Liverpool should prioritise the EPL title over the Champions League has been discussed recently, with former Manchester United stalwart Gary Neville urging the Reds to forego their European dream.

Liverpool manager Klopp, meanwhile, remains upbeat about progressing on the continent. When the Liverpool website asked him how optimistic he was about reaching the quarter-finals, he said: "As optimistic as possible before a game against very strong opponents.

"It's just an open game, that's actually the only thing you need for the second one.

"With a 0-0, everything is clear: you have to win the game. That's what you always want. In this specific case, you can win the game with a draw as well, but it's all clear - we have to play a really good game."

The 51-year-old has a modest record of nine wins, five draws and 16 defeats in 30 games against the Bavarians - as coach of either Liverpool or former clubs Mainz and Borussia Dortmund - dating back to 2004.

However, in his seven seasons with Dortmund, between 2008 and 2015, Klopp managed an impressive four wins, plus a draw and four defeats, from nine games in Munich.

He tasted victory on his last visit to the Allianz Arena in April 2015, when Dortmund beat Bayern on penalties in the semi-finals of the German Cup.

But Klopp knows that his team must be at their best to beat an in-form Bayern. Niko Kovac's side have won their last three games with a goal ratio of 12-1 since the first-leg draw.

"It's a much more positive moment for Bayern. They are top of the table and winning games comfortably again. But, if we are at our best, we can be exceptional," he said.

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