Former Liverpool defender Stephen Warnock has identified his ideal replacement for Mohamed Salah, who is wanted by Saudi Arabian clubs.
Last summer, the 31-year-old was subject to intense interest from Saudi Pro League winners Al-Ittihad. The oil-rich club, who are backed by the Saudi Public Investment Fund, reportedly tabled a staggering world record £215 million offer for the attacker, but Liverpool remained adamant their star man was not for sale.
Despite Liverpool’s insistence that Salah is not for sale, speculations remain rife that he could be sold next season. The winger has made a great start to the new campaign, but it is thought he will leave Anfield before his contract runs out in 2025.
WHAT WAS SAID
Speaking about Salah’s future, former Liverpool player Warnock admitted that Jurgen Klopp’s side will find it hard to replace their talisman. However, the 41-year-old insisted every player is ‘replaceable’ and suggested his preferred candidate to replace the forward.
“Everyone’s replaceable. I’ve said it about [Luis] Suarez, I’ve said it about [Philippe] Coutinho, and he [Salah] will be replaceable in time,’ Warnock told talkSport.
“I think the big problem is with Salah if you get a £175 million offer from Saudi Arabia that’s difficult to say no to.
“I wouldn’t sell him in January, but maybe next season, but only if you’ve got someone else lined up.
“You’d have to have someone exciting lined up. The one player that springs to mind is [Khvicha] Kvaratskhelia. He’s the one player you look at who you think he’s young and has potential and can play, but he’s a left-sided player. Could he play on the right?”
Kvaratskhelia played a starring role in Napoli’s Serie A title win last season and has many top clubs in Europe interested.
Premier League side Newcastle tested the water with a club record £82m bid in June for the 22-year-old Georgian, but the deal didn’t materialise. Worn Napoli’s title defence looking likely to be unsuccessful after a poor start to the new season, several European clubs could return for the winger next summer.