The upcoming African Cup Of Nations (AFCON), commencing on Saturday, January 13th, might witness numerous Premier League star players departing their clubs to participate in representing their respective countries in the tournament.
African-affiliated players are anticipated to be absent for weeks or potentially months, contingent on their countries’ progression in the tournament.
As expected, Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah is among the extensive list of affected players. Jurgen Klopp will need to reorganize his team to compensate for the absence of the Egyptian winger and fill the void left by his departure.
Harvey Elliot and Cody Gakpo are likely to alternate at right-wing once Salah leaves for AFCON later this month. The specific formation or tactics Jurgen Klopp opts for to ensure his team functions effectively in Salah’s absence will become apparent in due course.
Undoubtedly, the significance of a player within a team is crucial, and Mohamed Salah embodies the heart and mind of Liverpool’s offensive play.
At 31 years old, Salah has already scored double-digit goals (12) this season and boasts the highest number of goal contributions in the Premier League for 2023 (39). Additionally, he leads with the most league assists in 2023 (15), showcasing his pivotal role in Liverpool’s attacking prowess.
Liverpool currently leading the Premier League table, closely followed by Manchester City, each game week that Mohamed Salah is absent from the Merseysiders’ starting lineup potentially grants Pep Guardiola and Manchester City an advantage in the title race.
Here are the potential games Mohamed Salah might be absent for Liverpool when he leaves to participate in the AFCON tournament with Egypt later this month:
1. Arsenal vs Liverpool on 7th January
2. Liverpool vs Fulham on 10th January
3. Bournemouth vs Liverpool on 21st January
4. Fulham vs Liverpool on 24th January
5. Liverpool’s FA cup 4th round opponent
6. Liverpool vs Chelsea on 31st January
7. Arsenal vs Liverpool on 4th February
8. Liverpool vs Burnley on 10th February