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Ansu Fati or Raphinha—Who should Liverpool pursue as Mohamed Salah’s potential replacement?

Liverpool are reportedly eyeing a long-term replacement for their star forward Mohamed Salah, with Barcelona attacker Raphinha and on-loan Brighton and Hove Albion forward Ansu Fati linked with a move to Anfield.

Mohamed Salah, 31, who has done wonders for the Reds, was heavily linked with a move to Saudi Arabia last summer. However, the Merseyside club rejected Saudi Pro League side Al-Ittihad’s attempts to sign the Egyptian forward. However, the 31-year-old could be on the move to the Middle East in the future and a permanent departure from the club would open up space in the Liverpool squad.

According to TEAMTalk, Raphinha and Ansu Fati could be on the list of targets for Liverpool to replace Salah in the future.

Raphinha played an important role in Barcelona’s La Liga triumph last season but he has not had a similar impact this term. As for Fati, the Spaniard is currently on loan with Brighton, and despite some injury issues, he has scored four goals from 18 appearances.

The report adds that as Raphinha is a left-footed winger, he could be the subject of an offer from the Reds if Salah departs.

Raphinha or Ansu Fati—Who should Liverpool sign as Salah’s replacement?

Liverpool may have coped extremely well without Mohamed Salah while he was away at the AFCON with Egypt, but he arguably remains the club’s most valuable asset and replacing him whenever the time comes would be a tough act. Before leaving for the AFCON, he had contributed 14 goals and eight assists from 20 Premier League outings during 2023-24.

However, the legendary forward has recently entered the final 18 months of his contract at Liverpool and it is currently unclear whether those terms will be extended. Given Salah’s value and known interest from the Saudi Pro League, the Merseyside giants will not want to risk the 31-year-old leaving on a free transfer in the summer of 2025. Any money generated from the Egyptian’s sale would be required to find a suitable replacement, with Liverpool set to usher into a new era following Jurgen Klopp’s departure at the end of the season.

Raphinha and Fati are each on Liverpool’s radar ahead of Salah’s potential exit, with the former understood to be having the edge due to him being a left-footed right-winger. Raphinha has fallen down the pecking order at Barcelona, albeit contributing six assists and three goals in 23 appearances across all competitions. Likewise, Fati, who wasn’t involved much under Xavi Hernandez last term, was allowed to join Brighton on loan for the 2023/24 season.

Barcelona officials view both players as sellable assets as they bid to boost their poor FFP situation. In Liverpool’s hunt for a potential Salah replacement, Raphinha would fit the bill. The Brazilian was Leeds United’s best player during his two-year stay at Elland Road, helping the Yorkshire-based club maintain their top-flight status. He has a lot more Premier League experience than Fati and won’t take time to hit the ground running if a move to Liverpool does materialise.

Raphinha has failed to live up to the lofty expectations at Camp Nou but he can certainly turn things around, and a move to Liverpool can certainly help his cause. As the Reds are aware that Al-Ittihad could return with an offer for Salah in the summer, they must look to tempt Barcelona into selling Raphinha.

Rohan Sengupta

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