Liverpool could be in for a fight to keep hold of Mohamed Salah as Real Madrid are reportedly plotting a summer swoop for the forward. However, Los Blancos will first have to offload injury-prone attacker Gareth Bale, whose move to China fell through last year.
Bale’s enormous salary makes him a difficult prospect to sell.
Even tentative links to Manchester United and Tottenham would never materialise unless the Welshman takes a substantial pay cut.
If Real are able to offload the winger then president Florentio Perez is ready to move for Salah, according to Spanish outlet El Desmarque.
Ideally the La Liga giants would prefer to sign Paris Saint-Germain starlet Kylian Mbappe, who has two years remaining on his current contract.
However, they would struggle to meet the £252m (€300m) valuation so they have been made to look elsewhere.
And Perez sees Salah as the ideal alternative to become the latest Galactico.
The Egyptian starred as Liverpool won the Champions League last year and is on course to secure the Premier League title this term.
Meanwhile, Sky Sports pundit Gary Neville claims Salah fancies a move to the Bernabeu.
“I said 18 months ago I thought Mo Salah would leave Liverpool,” he said.
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“I think it’s a little bit more simple in the sense of why Liverpool fans maybe don’t demonstrate that love for Salah, and it’s affinity and loyalty.
“I think there’s a feeling that he wants to go and play at Real Madrid, he’ll go to Barcelona – he’ll take the big move.
“That’s not a criticism of Mo Salah. I played with David Beckham, I played with Ruud van Nistelrooy, I played with Cristiano Ronaldo – they wanted to aspire to win the Ballon d’Or, they wanted to be at Real Madrid, they wanted to be up in lights and play at the biggest clubs in the world.
“I think there’s a feeling: affinity, loyalty, will he leave us? I think he could.
“I think he is ultimately using Liverpool potentially as a stepping stone for his career. He has aspirations to be [at a club like Madrid or Barca].
“Let’s be honest, Real Madrid and Barcelona for a lot of players are the pinnacle.”
Salah is contracted with Liverpool until 2023 so only a blockbuster fee would draw Liverpool’s attention.
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