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“Thought: ‘What the fuck!'”: When Jürgen Klopp almost brought Mohamed Salah to Borussia Dortmund



Jürgen Klopp at the side of Mohamed Salah.

Jürgen Klopp and Mohamed Salah work together extremely successfully at Liverpool FC. The coach wanted the Egyptian already at BVB.

The top transfers from Borussia Dortmund in the 2013/14 season are impressive: Henrikh Mkhitaryan came from Shakhtar Donezk, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s commitment from AS Saint-Etienne turned out to be a real stroke of luck and the purchase of Werder Bremen’s defense chief Sokratis was a good decision.

A name that today is one of the absolute world stars of the football scene almost had its place in this list at the time – at least if it had been up to the then BVB coach Jürgen Klopp.

BVB – Chelsea came “too early” for Mohamed Salah

“We didn’t know him before the game. Then we saw him and thought: ‘What the fuck!'”, Said Klopp, remembering a preparatory game against FC Basel in the summer of 2013. We were talking about a certain Mohamed Salah, whose first stop in Europe was at the top Swiss club.

Basel lost 1: 3, but Salah’s performance impressed Klopp deeply. “When I said let’s get him, he was already at Chelsea,” revealed Klopp in 2017 when he made the Egyptian for the record transfer at his current employer Liverpool FC.

Three years earlier, in 2014, Salah finally moved to Chelsea instead of Dortmund. He was never happy with the blues. Only 19 missions were recorded after one year. Klopp later spoke of the fact that the Chelsea station “simply came too early” for Salah.

Salah ends up at Liverpool via Florence and the Roma

After two loans to Serie A for Fiorentina and Roma, which signed him firmly in 2016 and scored 56 points for Salah in 83 games, he finally landed back in England and has meanwhile won the Premier League and the Champions League with Liverpool among the best players on the planet.

“He was a lost child in London. We wanted to work with him, make him better. But he had the idea to play immediately,” said then Chelsea coach Jose Mourinho beIN SPORTS about Salah’s unsuccessful stint with the Blues. “Back then he was a boy who always wanted to play. And we couldn’t give him that.”

Had things gone better then, Salah might never have found his way to Liverpool. So Klopp could still look forward to a collaboration with the bustling left-footer – with a few years delay.