LIVERPOOL legend John Barnes has named Mo Salah as the best player in the world… but still warned Liverpool to be careful offering him a new contract.
Barnes, 57, has suggested that despite Salah's obvious quality, giving him a bumper new deal at 29-years-old could come back to haunt Liverpool in the future.
The former England international said: "Right now he is the best player in the world. He has been for probably the last two or three months.
"Liverpool have got him for the next two years, so that’s important. The problem is that it’s a similar situation to Gini Wijnaldum.
"He’s got two years left on his contract and if he wants a five-year contract that will take him to 34 years old. At 34 he’s probably not going to be worth what he is now.
"This is the situation. It’s important that he stays focused while he’s playing for Liverpool, which is going to be for at least the next year.
"But if you make Salah the highest paid player in the world and then when he’s 33 he’s not in the team because he’s not fit or too old, he’s taking up a big salary and how do you go and get another player?
"Contracts aren’t important. The important thing is that Liverpool have got him for the next two years and he’s here and committed and the club love him."
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Salah has had a phenomenal start to the season, scoring 15 goals in 12 games in all competitions, taking his Liverpool tally to 140 goals in just 215 games.
He also became just the second Liverpool player after Dirk Kuyt to score a hat-trick in the Premier League against Man Utd in their 5-0 rout at Old Trafford on Sunday.
Liverpool have been locked in contract talks with the Egyptian for several months, with reports suggesting he's asking for between £300k and £380k-per-week.
This would make him one of the highest paid players in the Premier League, with the likes of Kevin De Bruyne and David De Gea on similar wages with £385k and £375k-per-week respectively.
But with Liverpool reluctant to offer such a high salary, it has been suggested that they could cash-in on Salah in the summer, with Real Madrid and PSG both interested in signing him.
Despite the speculation, however, Salah has admitted that his preference would be to stay at Liverpool, having recently become the fastest player to reach 100 goals for the club.
He said: "If you ask me, I would love to stay until the last day of my football career, but I can't say much about that – it's not in my hands.
"It depends on what the club want, not on me. At the moment I can't see myself ever playing against Liverpool. That would make me sad. It's hard, I don't want to talk about it, but it would make me really sad.
"At the moment I don't see myself playing against Liverpool but let's see what will happen in the future."
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