(Reuters) – Liverpool striker Mohamed Salah’s “greed” for goals has helped the club as they aim to finish in the Premier League’s top four, said manager Juergen Klopp.
Liverpool, who stormed to the title last season, were eighth in March with Champions League qualification looking unlikely, but they went on a nine-match unbeaten run to move up to fourth.
Salah played a key role in Klopp’s team, scoring 22 goals, tied with Tottenham Hotspur’s Harry Kane in the race for the Golden Boot, which is awarded to the Premier League’s top scorer.
“It is easy to see where we would be without Mo’s goals. But that is also true for the other teams without the goals their top scorers score,” Klopp told reporters before Sunday’s home game against Crystal Palace.
“The team helps him a lot but Mo carries a lot as well. It’s his desire, it’s his professionalism, it’s his greed as well which helps us completely.”
Egypt international Salah is Liverpool’s only player to reach double-digit league goals this season, with Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane and Diogo Jota each scoring nine.
“It is a really top year for him because for a striker in a team which is not flying constantly, scoring these numbers is absolutely exceptional. That’s what makes him really special,” Klopp said.
Chelsea (67 points), Liverpool and Leicester City (66 points each) are in a three-way battle for the last two Champions League places ahead of Sunday’s final round of matches.
(Reporting by Manasi Pathak in Bengaluru; Editing by William Mallard)