Graeme Souness believes Mohamed Salah didn’t look like the same player after being rocked by Lisandro Martinez in Liverpool’s defeat by Manchester United last week.
Salah has enjoyed a quiet start to the new Premier League season by his own standards with two goals and two assists in six games so far.
The Egypt international was also subdued during Liverpool’s first defeat of the season as they were beaten 2-1 by United on August 22.
And Souness believes Martinez’s physicality against Salah during Liverpool’s defeat at Old Trafford had a lasting impact on his performances.
“I’m looking at Salah for Liverpool against Man United and in the first five minutes Martinez goes right through him,” Souness told Sky Sports.
“The rest of the game Mo Salah was looking for Martinez and looking where he was. I haven’t seen the same Mo Salah since then.
“I just hope and he signed the big deal he wanted but at this level if you knock off half a percent or a percent then you’re not the same player.
“I hope he’s not half in his chair because he’s signed a big contract.
“I say this as a Liverpool supporter, hopefully to infuriate him and prove me wrong.”
Salah also struggled to impress in Saturday’s goalless draw between Liverpool and Everton.
But after the game, Klopp downplayed suggestions that Salah has a bigger role to play for Liverpool this season.
“No, it’s no more than other seasons or whatever, I’m not sure what you’re seeing there.
“We want Mo in this position, but we want Mo and we’ve always had him, more often in central positions. Especially today we wanted to use the boys a little more centrally, but of course we didn’t have much time to train.
“Actually we were just recovering, we talked a lot about it, I’m not sure I was clear enough about what we wanted in the first half. In the moments when we played when Mo fell over or as Lucho [Luis Diaz] After two or three passes they fell totally free between the lines because Darwin with his sheer presence held back the last line and liked to drop them fairly early.
“But we haven’t done that often enough, you’re right. I don’t think he’s wide too often this season, maybe in a few moments today yes. But he could have scored another goal in the last minute.”
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