The Independent newspaper makes football and politics in mind, commenting on the future of Egyptian football star Mohamed Salah after the country’s national team’s misconduct at the World Cup in Russia.
The British daily commented on the possible withdrawal of the Liverpool star from the national team at the age of 26 because it is clearly uncomfortable to use his name and image for political purposes not only in his homeland but also internationally.
The rumors about Salah’s maturing intention come from the camp of the Egyptian team in the Chechen capital Grozny. The choice of the Egyptian Football Federation to select Chechnya as the base of the team – the arena of two separatist military conflicts and a repressive government with a very controversial human rights file – raises many questions, notes Independent, . The head of the Russian republic, Ramzan Kadyrov, has won the reputation of a regional ruler with a key role in strengthening Russia’s relations with the Middle East Muslim countries, even sending troops from the Chechen security forces to Syria.
Salah, called by the newspaper The Egyptian King, for its part, is probably the most famous and certainly the most popular Muslim person in the world. He is adored in his home country and abroad not only for his great football skills but also for his modesty and friendly manners. It has already become an icon of the vast majority, professing temperamental Islam in Europe, which undeservedly bears the shame of the series of Islamist attacks on the continent in 2017. But its popularity attracts around him elements that are obviously extremely unpleasant to him. That’s why he is still so young and even at the beginning of his strident flight to the top of his sport glory, he is on the verge of abandoning his country, writes Independent.
Salah was undoubtedly used as a propaganda instrument by Kadyrov during his stay in Grozny. The Chechen president personally took him to the team’s hotel and drove him around the city, declaring him “honorary citizen” of the Chechen capital during an official dinner.