Mo Salah: We can win the Champions League

Liverpool star winger Mo Salah talks exclusively to CNN about the possibility of winning the Champions League this year and winning the Golden Boot.

Posted: Apr 16, 2018 6:18 AM
Updated: Apr 16, 2018 6:20 AM

No sooner had Mohamed Salah crushed Manchester City's Champions League dreams this week, the messages between Liverpool and Rome went into overdrive.

Those exchanges are now likely to be put on hold with Liverpool star Salah being pitted against his former employer, Roma, in the semifinal of the Champions League.

Speaking to CNN ahead of the draw, Salah said he had already been messaging his former teammates, offering his congratulations after Roma's astonishing victory over Barcelona.

But while he holds good memories of Rome and speaks fondly of his old team, he says Liverpool were the club his friends in Italy wanted to avoid in the final four.

"They've all said: 'We don't want to play against Liverpool,'" Salah told CNN International in an exclusive interview.

"It would be nice to go back to Rome, it's my old club. I love the fans there and they love me too.

"I still talk to most of the players there. We were very close to each other and we are good friends.

"Of course, I have happy memories. We played together for two years and were fighting together in all the games. We had a good time in the dressing room. "

READ: 'There's something very special about Liverpool,' says Salah

'Unbelievable'

Salah spent two years playing in Serie A with Roma, scoring 15 goals in 31 appearances last season before joining Liverpool last June for a then club-record fee of $49 million.

While progressing to the Champions League final is Salah's primary concern, he can't wait to see one former colleague in particular at the Serie A club.

"Totti," Salah says with a smile, referring to Francesco Totti, who retired from football last May after a career spanning 24 years at Roma, the only club he played for and where he's revered by the fans.

"He is amazing, unbelievable," says Salah. "He has everything. I love him. I have a good relationship with him, he's very nice."

READ: Was Ronaldo's overhead kick the best goal ever?

READ: Agonizing for Juventus

Goals, goals, and more goals

While Salah may not have reached that point of adulation at Anfield quite yet, his recent exploits have led to him becoming one of the most popular players the club has seen for years.

The winger has scored 39 goals so far this campaign, 29 of those coming in the league to leave him on the brink of securing the coveted golden boot.

On Friday, the 25-year-old became the first ever player to be awarded with the Premier League player of the month award for a third time in the same season.

READ: Buffon: Referee has 'garbage bin' for heart

He has scored seven goals in his past four games in all competitions, and is determined to lead Liverpool past Roma, the team it defeated in the 1984 European Cup final.

Real Madrid, the 12-times winner, remains favorite for the competition, though its opponent, Bayern Munich, will be confident of springing a surprise after the Spanish giant only just scraped through to the last four.

But if Liverpool can overcome Roma, could it win the competition for a sixth time?

Visit CNN.com/sport for more news and features

"We can, we are in the semifinal," Salah said. "I always say that we take it step-by-step but we are in the semifinal, everything can happen.

"Everyone went into the quarterfinal with this emotion that we have to win, we can do it. Now with the semifinal, it's two games to the last step."

Liverpool will host Roma at Anfield In the semifinal first leg on April 24, with the return at the Stadio Olimpico in Italy's capital on May 2.

Golden Boot

For now, though, Salah will refocus on the Premier League, and winning the coveted Golden Boot, which is awarded to the division's top scorer. Liverpool play Bournemouth on Saturday April 14.

Salah has a four-goal lead over Tottenham's Harry Kane, who has netted 25 league goals this season, while Manchester City's Sergio Aguero has 21.

Kane climbed to 25 goals after he was controversially awarded a goal in the recent 2-1 win over Stoke City after it had initially been given to teammate Christian Eriksen.

The Premier League goals accreditation panel reversed its decision on appeal after Kane claimed that Eriksen's free-kick had grazed his shoulder.

The decision was met with surprise by Salah, who tweeted: "Wooooooow really ?" after hearing the news.

"Yeah, Harry Kane and Sergio Aguero, you know I said before they are strikers, " Salah added.

"They play number nine, I play as a winger more. So it's easier for them because they're always in front of the goal, but I play as a winger.

"It's a little bit more difficult because I have to give assists. I have to give the ball up, create the chances, but they're number nines and it's easier for them."

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 32078

Reported Deaths: 2004
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion9268539
Lake3320168
Cass15826
Allen130966
St. Joseph120534
Hendricks113067
Hamilton111592
Johnson1086104
Elkhart105728
Madison58258
Porter49021
Bartholomew48133
Clark46138
LaPorte41522
Tippecanoe3753
Jackson3671
Howard36519
Delaware35735
Hancock32127
Shelby31521
Floyd31438
Boone28835
Morgan26224
Vanderburgh2482
Montgomery23117
White2268
Decatur22431
Clinton2221
Grant19121
Noble18921
Harrison18721
Dubois1852
Greene16724
Warrick16426
Dearborn16421
Henry1619
Monroe16011
Vigo1477
Lawrence14423
Miami1391
Putnam1337
Jennings1274
Orange12422
Scott1183
Ripley1126
Franklin1068
Kosciusko941
Carroll922
Daviess8216
Steuben802
Marshall761
Newton7410
Wabash722
Wayne715
Fayette684
LaGrange602
Jasper581
Washington521
Fulton471
Rush452
Jay440
Randolph433
Jefferson411
Whitley402
Pulaski390
Clay391
Owen341
Brown331
Sullivan321
Starke313
DeKalb311
Perry260
Huntington262
Knox250
Tipton251
Benton250
Wells240
Crawford230
Blackford211
Switzerland190
Fountain182
Spencer171
Posey170
Parke170
Gibson142
Ohio130
Warren121
Adams121
Vermillion90
Martin90
Union80
Pike60
Unassigned0154

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 33006

Reported Deaths: 2002
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Franklin5414239
Cuyahoga4060221
Marion262323
Hamilton2492128
Lucas2152229
Pickaway204635
Mahoning1347171
Summit1277159
Butler81725
Stark69790
Columbiana65750
Lorain65358
Montgomery60915
Trumbull54045
Belmont40212
Miami35130
Warren34020
Tuscarawas3212
Portage31657
Medina30719
Delaware30213
Ashtabula28332
Lake28212
Wood27745
Geauga25829
Wayne25250
Fairfield2463
Clark2256
Licking21410
Mercer2003
Clermont1935
Allen19131
Richland1873
Erie1595
Darke15616
Madison1417
Washington11718
Crawford1063
Morrow1041
Greene945
Ottawa927
Putnam8714
Monroe7311
Sandusky7010
Hocking694
Ross662
Auglaize643
Jefferson632
Huron551
Williams521
Hancock481
Union460
Muskingum450
Clinton430
Hardin410
Shelby402
Logan370
Fayette370
Wyandot362
Fulton350
Guernsey320
Defiance322
Preble301
Lawrence280
Holmes281
Carroll282
Champaign271
Coshocton260
Brown251
Knox231
Seneca192
Highland191
Vinton191
Ashland190
Athens181
Perry181
Henry150
Scioto150
Paulding130
Jackson120
Harrison100
Adams81
Gallia71
Van Wert60
Meigs60
Pike60
Noble50
Morgan50
Unassigned00
Fort Wayne
Scattered Clouds
75° wxIcon
Hi: 89° Lo: 66°
Feels Like: 75°
Angola
Broken Clouds
72° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 66°
Feels Like: 72°
Huntington
Broken Clouds
75° wxIcon
Hi: 88° Lo: 66°
Feels Like: 75°
Decatur
Clear
72° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 67°
Feels Like: 72°
Van Wert
Clear
72° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 65°
Feels Like: 72°
Scattered Storms Wednesday
WFFT Radar
WFFT Temperatures
WFFT National

Community Events