The Chalkboard: Mohamed Salah thrives in right wing role

Mohamed Salah returned to form on Saturday and it is no coincidence that Liverpool, too, got back to winning ways.

The Egypt international was deployed on the right flank against AFC Bournemouth and scored as the Reds won 3-0.

On the chalkboard

Liverpool’s return to 4-3-3, and Salah’s move to the flank, brought the best out of the forward almost immediately.

He has been used in central roles recently and was quiet in the Reds’ last two league outings, in draws against Leicester City and West Ham United.

This time out, however, Salah was at the centre of everything Liverpool did right.

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Per WhoScored, Salah touched the ball just 42 times against Leicester and completed just 16 passes. Similarly, the forward touched the ball 47 times in the draw with West Ham, completing 24 passes.

By comparison, Salah had 77 touches in the win over Bournemouth and completed 43 passes. His contribution, essentially, was doubled, as he was given the freedom to roam into the centre and affect play further forward, instead of having his back to goal.

It is no surprise, then, that he scored, and also made three key passes.

Stick with a winning formula

It makes no sense for Klopp to change this now.

Liverpool have a remarkably tough week coming up, as the Reds face Bayern Munich in the Champions League before a clash with high-flying rivals Manchester United.

United are yet to lose a game under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and they will be out to stop the Reds’ title challenge in its tracks.

It would be logical, then, for Liverpool to stick with 4-3-3 and allow Salah the freedom to roam.

He is a world-class wide player but his effectiveness is limited when he is deployed through the middle.

Against the defences of Bayern and United, he should play on the right, and be allowed to wreak his own inimitable brand of havoc.