Ex Basel coach, Heiko Vogel has hailed Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah by describing him as a gentle killer.
He said even if he doubted his ability to make things happen at one of Europe’s top-level clubs, he has proven him wrong.
Salah has dazzled in the EPL since he joined Anfield from Roma and Vogel has said that he has a massive mental strength to make it at the highest level.
His words, “He had everything – the speed, the finish, the left foot – and that wasn’t overlooked.”
“Still, I would be lying if I said had prophesied such a massive global career for him.”
“In fact, I was more sure about others: Toni Kroos or Eden Hazard – I saw them when they were 15 years old. The nice thing is, I met Momo last year and he has not changed at all. That’s outstanding.
“If you knew him… he is not a world star, he has such a gentle character. It was always clear to me that he is an outstanding player, but whether he had the mentality? I didn’t know that exactly. Momo is a gentle killer.”
“Gegge (sporting director Georg Heitz) and I told him: ‘Listen, just train as you like – we’ve already made our decision anyway’,” Vogel went on. “Then he trained on the first day; everyone watched the session and we wondered if he might have a twin brother.
“The second day was a bit better, but not good. Gegge and I had already been talking him up for the tiniest things, saying stuff like: ‘did you see that pass?’. And then came the third day. It was then that he destroyed everything, he was really unstoppable.
“[The first two days] he wasn’t nervous. He was confident, but immersed in a new world. He had to acclimate himself in the truest sense of the word. He came to us from hot north Africa. It’s always difficult when you get into an environment where you do not really understand the language.
“[But] I have rarely seen such a dominant appearance in two-on-five [on that third day]. It was absolutely extraordinary. He was so agile, so explosive. If he had the ball on his left foot, it was a goal. But Momo always had an eye for his team-mates as well.
“After that performance everyone knew why we wanted to sign him.”
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