Former Bafana Bafana Star Weighs In On Salah-Messi Debate
Former Bafana Bafana Star Weighs In On Mohamed Salah-Lionel Messi Debate
A former Bafana Bafana star has weighed in on the recent comparisons between 2018 PFA Player of the Year Mohamed Salah and five-time Ballon d'Or winner Lionel Messi.
The Egypt international, who has scored 31 goals in 33 Premier League appearances for Liverpool so far this season, became only the third African to win the prestigious PFA award when he beat Manchester City trio Kevin De Bruyne, Leroy Sane and David Silva, as well as Tottenham Hotspur duo Dele Alli and Harry Kane, to the crown.
However, Steven Pienaar, a former Everton midfielder, believes it is too early to start comparing the 25-year-old Salah with Argentine superstar Messi, but admitted that he had no doubts about the winger's ability.
"It is early to compare him with Messi," Pienaar told ESPN.
"He's tough and he's got the character to build on (this season). I think he can be consistent for many, many years, and he's only young as well.
"When I first saw him at Basel, I knew there was something special about him.
"Back then, they said he was the Egyptian Messi who was going to come through, and when he moved to Chelsea he was just unlucky that he didn't get the opportunity that he's getting now.
"When he left, he went to Fiorentina to work on his confidence, and I was never surprised."
Salah has made 46 appearances across all competitions for the Reds so far this season, scoring 41 goals and assisting a further 13 strikes.
Do you think the Egyptian will reach Messi's level of consistency as years go by? Have your say in the comments section below.