Liverpool Block Salah Call Up for World Cup Qualifiers

Liverpool have reportedly refused to allow Mohamed Salah to play in Africa’s World Cup qualifiers next month because he would have to undergo a 10-day Coronavirus quarantine.

Members of the European Club Association, including Liverpool, seek exemptions from the mandatory quarantine rules for players coming from red-listed countries but an agreement between the Premier League and the government is yet to be reached.

With Salah facing a 10-day isolation period should he honour his call-up against Angola in Cairo, Liverpool have informed the Egyptian FA the 29-year-old will not be released for their World Cup qualifier.

The club have no objections to Salah playing Egypt’s second World Cup qualifier in Gabon on 5 September as Gabon is on the UK’s Amber list and no quarantine rules would apply.

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British media are reporting that the club will also not permit three Brazilian stars, Roberto Firmino, Allison and Fabinho, to join their national team.

The four players would miss the Leeds match, Liverpool’s first Champions League game and Crystal Palace’s visit to Anfield on 18 September, should they be forced to isolate for 10 days on their return.

European clubs are reported to consider taking similar measures when players travel to red list nations, potentially putting them on a collision course with FIFA.

Fifa last month scrapped an exemption introduced last year amid the Covid-19 pandemic, which allowed clubs to refuse to release players for international duty should travel restrictions be imposed.

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