Mohamed Salah

Why Do People Hate Mohamed Salah?

Mohamed Salah is considered one of the best football players in the world today. As the star striker for Liverpool and the Egyptian national team, Salah is admired by millions of fans globally.

However, like any high-profile personality, Salah has also attracted some detractors and anti-fans. This article explores the possible reasons why some folks harbor dislike or hatred towards Mohamed Salah.

What is the Source of the Dislike Towards Mohamed Salah?

As one of the most prolific scorers and talented players of his generation, Mohamed Salah inevitably draws strong reactions from football audiences. Some root causes of the animosity and resentment expressed by a section of viewers are:

Playing Style and Success

Some people dislike him because of his playing style which they view as greedy, selfish, or too focused on scoring goals over team play. Others may feel jealous or resentful towards his massive success and goal-scoring feats.

On-Field Behavior

There have been some controversies over Salah’s conduct during games – like perceived instances of diving, simulation, or waving an imaginary card demanding opponents be booked. This may have rubbed some football fans the wrong way.


Salah has some signature goal celebrations which some detractors may consider over the top, disrespectful, or lacking humility. This likely fuels negative perceptions among his critics.

Playing for Rival Teams

Salah has represented some of the biggest clubs in English and European football. Stints with rivals Chelsea, Roma, and now Liverpool means fans of these opponent teams are unlikely to appreciate Salah’s talents.

Off-Field Perceptions

Like most celebrities, some of the disdain may also arise from public views about Salah’s personality, lifestyle, wealth, endorsements, or other off-field factors. His global fame outside of football may also play a role.

This table summarizes the major reasons driving Mohamed Salah dislike:

Playing StyleConsidered selfish, greedy
On-Field ConductInstances of perceived diving, simulation
Goal CelebrationsSeen as disrespectful by some
Rival Team AssociationPlayed for opponent clubs
Off-field PerceptionsRegarding personality, fame, endorsements

What Moments or Actions Triggered the Anti-Salah Sentiments?

While the dislike may be long-standing in some cases, there have been a few key incidents or behaviors that seemingly exacerbated Mohamed Salah animosity:

Perceived Dives vs Midtjylland and West Ham

Salah faced heavy criticism for allegedly diving in two separate games – a 2020 Champions League match versus Danish club Midtjylland and a 2021 English Premier League game against West Ham United. Both incidents fueled the notions of Salah being a serial diver.

Calling for Opponent Booking vs Brighton

In a 2022 Premier League match with Brighton & Hove Albion, Salah was caught on cameras waving an imaginary yellow card. He seemingly demanded action against a Brighton player following a foul. This did not sit well with many fans and pundits, leading to online backlash centered on lacking sportsmanship.

AFCON Tournament Dispute

A major controversy erupted between Liverpool FC and the Egyptian Football Association ahead of the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) tournament. When Liverpool refused to release Salah early for national team duty, he vented frustrations on social media – triggering anger from fans of the English club.

So while the anti-Salah sentiment builds up over time, occasional flashpoints tend to amplify his perceived unsportsmanlike conduct in the eyes of critics.

What are Some Common Anti-Salah Arguments Made by His Detractors?

There is no shortage of criticism leveled against Mohamed Salah – valid or otherwise – on sports shows, fan forums, social networks, and comment sections. Some repeating themes in the anti-Salah rhetoric include:

Arrogant and Disrespectful

Some call out his goal celebrations, media comments, and general demeanor as signs of arrogance, self-aggrandizement, and disrespect towards opponents or fans. Terms like “narcissist” are often used.

Diver and Serial Cheat

Accusations of frequent diving, simulation, playacting, and conning referees into unfair decisions are a constant. Critics say this “cheating” undermines his stellar numbers.

Puts Himself Over the Team

Questions raised over selfish play, an individualistic style unsuited to team sport, lack of creativity, and obsession with personal records like the Golden Boot.

Chokes in Big Games

When he has rare off-games in big tournaments like the Africa Cup of Nations or Champions League, the “flat-track bully” and “choker” labels quickly emerge on social media.


Some skeptics downplay his achievements as products of a strong Liverpool system, and assert he is not worthy of being ranked with icons like Messi or Ronaldo despite similar scoring stats.

As seen above, the anti-Salah rhetoric often revisits similar themes around arrogance, cheating, selfishness and him being overvalued as a footballer.

How Does Salah Respond to His Detractors?

For the most part, Mohamed Salah avoids being drawn into the criticism and keeps his responses to doubters modest. Some examples:

On Claims He is Arrogant

“I don’t have anything to say about that because I’m trying just to win games. That’s the most important thing.”

On Accusations of Diving and Cheating

“I don’t dive at all. There was contact, and it’s not like diving for the ball. It was contact.”

On Claims He is Selfish

“I’m not selfish at all. To be selfish is to see someone in a better position than you but you decide to go alone, and not pass to him. I don’t do that.”

His usual refrain is that he tries to keep focused on his job and winning games with his team. Salah seems to recognize getting embroiled in bitter debates with haters is fruitless and distracting.

What Impact Do Salah’s Critics and Haters Have?

The constant drip of anti-Salah sentiment, as exaggerated or unfair as it may be, appears to have some tangible effects, including:

Fuels Fan Rivalry and Loyalty Debates

It heightens accusation battles between fan bases of Salah’s various clubs – Chelsea, Roma, Liverpool – over his loyalty and commitment to their team versus the others.

Creates Pressure on Refereeing Decisions

When he does genuinely lose his balance or go down, referees likely hesitate before awarding decisions as they brace for accusations of favoritism.

Drives Over-Scrutiny on Pitch Conduct

His on-field behavior faces excessive examination through endless video replays seeking signs of arrogance, dissent, or simulation.

So while Salah himself refrains from being baited into reactionary statements, the constant critiques do breed some unwelcome byproducts like ref bias, fan toxicity, and microscope on his sportsmanship.

This table outlines the downstream effects of the anti-Salah sentiment:

Heightens Fan RivalryLiverpool vs Chelsea vs Roma loyalty debates
Pressures Referee DecisionsHesitate to give fouls/penalties fearing favoritism charges
Over-scrutinizes Pitch ConductEndless review of behavior seeking arrogance/dissent

Is Any Validity to the Mohamed Salah Criticism?

Frank discussion around valid critiques versus unfair allegations marring Salah’s public image is vital. There may be some reasonable basis to certain complaints:

Occasional Simulation Antics

He likely does go down easily or embellish contact extravagantly on some occasions to win free kicks and penalties. But likely nowhere near serial diving levels.

Celebration Misdemeanors

Certain goal celebrations in high-emotion games may have overstepped reasonable bounds of modesty. But likely not arising from true disrespect.

Stretches of Self-Play

During deep goal droughts, he can appear to “try too hard” and force low-quality chances on his own when better passing options are available. But likely driven by a pressing need to score rather than selfishness.

However the volume and hostility disproportionately exceeds these isolated incidents. Much of the other criticism around arrogance, big-game bottling, disrespect, selfishness appears grossly exaggerated or patently unfair.

Conclusion and Summary

In many ways, the animosity aimed at Mohamed Salah is an unfortunate byproduct of his scintillating success and fame. As one of the most prolific forwards of recent times playing for elite clubs like Liverpool, the spotlight and scrutiny on him is unreasonably intense. Odd errors or emotional over-exuberance are bound to happen.

Elements of football tribalism also come into play – whether from fans of rival EPL clubs or his former teams like Chelsea where he struggled to impress. Jealousy around record goal feats and individual honors may also be to blame.

While occasional simulation antics or excessive celebrations can draw some fair critique, most other criticism seems disproportionate and harsh. Salah likely recognizes responding tends to legitimize and fuel vitriol so avoids public spats.

As frustrating as unchecked hate aimed at their star player is for Liverpool fans, rising admirably above petty squabbles has been Salah’s classy approach. Despite undeserved furor online, his outstanding consistency and world-class ability is validated by prestigious accolades.

Rather than waste time pleading with irrational haters, Salah simply keeps his head down and continues his relentless goal output. In doing so with humble self-belief and letting his football do the talking, lies the best riposte to his detractors.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Salah hated more than other top forwards?

Salah potentially faces more resentment than contemporaries like Messi and Mbappe due to playing in the passionate English league system for rival clubs, his background as an African Muslim athlete, and perceived on-field conduct.

Do Liverpool fans hate or defend Salah?

The vast majority of Liverpool fans passionately defend Salah as one of their greatest modern legends due to his prolific scoring impact over 5 seasons. They refute accusations of greed and selfishness as unfounded.

How has Salah handled racist abuse?

He has faced despicable racist fan behavior like offensive chanting in some away stadiums. But much like his response to other criticism, Salah opts to condemn the abuse without being baited into reactions.

Has Salah cheated on his wife Magi?

Rumors of marital strife and infidelity have chased Salah over his career without substantiation. He got married to Magi in 2013 and has four children with her. There exists no solid proof to validate any cheating allegations.

Why did Chelsea sell Salah so quickly?

Many football experts view Chelsea’s 2014 sale of Salah just a year after buying him from Basel as an erroneous premature judgment call. He was given inadequate time to flourish at a young age leading to unfilled potential before shining at Roma and Liverpool.

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