Liverpool star Mohamed Salah scored directly from a corner kick but was later injured as Egypt cruised to a 4-1 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying win over eSwatini on Friday. The striker went down holding his leg as the Group J match drew to a close in Cairo, resumed after receiving treatment, and was almost immediately withdrawn. His goal drew praise from all quarters of social media with some hailing the Egyptian King for his brilliant goal.
INCREDIBLE Goal from Mo Salah with Egypt pic.twitter.com/Xz09xFQNMr— Castle of the Kop (@castleofthekop) October 12, 2018
What a goal salah pic.twitter.com/C4Dk29LrFA— Peter Williams (@p_williams_0151) October 12, 2018
Mohamed Salah has just scored directly from a corner kick, unbelievable scenes! The King of Egypt is back amongst the goals— RF9(@SambaRole) October 12, 2018
Speaking after the match on the injury, Egypt assistant coach Hany Ramzy told BeIN Sports, "The initial diagnosis, according to the team doctor, is a strong muscle strain. It is not a tear, I think it is not serious." A spokesman for the team's medical department told the www.Kooora.com website: "He (Salah) had a light strain, we will do a scan as soon as possible. "I doubt he can play next Tuesday. We will be sure after the scan," he added, referring to the return match against eSwatini in Manzini.
After scoring 44 goals in all competitions during his first season at Anfield, the striker has netted only three this term, with just one since August. Salah netted twice and missed two penalties when record seven-time African champions Egypt hammered Niger 6-0 last month in another qualifier.
With eSwatini (formerly Swaziland) ranked even lower than Niger, there were expectations that Salah could get back on the goal trail at the Al Salam Stadium.
He blasted a shot wide with Egypt three goals ahead before curling a corner into the net on the stroke of half-time.
Salah fluffed a chance to net again by missing from inside the box during the second half after combining with Arsenal midfielder Mohamed Elneny.
Captain Ahmed Elmohamady, Amr Warda and Mahmoud Hassan also scored for Egypt and Sibonginkosi Gamedze snatched a late eSwatini goal.
Tunisia, who host Niger Saturday, and Egypt have six points each in a mini-league both seem certain to qualify from for the 2019 Cup of Nations in Cameroon.
(With AFP Inputs)