Jamie Carragher has now issued Bukayo Saka a challenge to prove the Arsenal star is the best right-winger in the Premier League over Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah.
The Reds hero is confident that Salah is still the best right-sided winger in the top-flight over Saka. But Carragher feels the Arsenal product is now running the Liverpool man ‘really close’ for the honour. It is also possible for the England international to edge the Egyptian one day.
Carragher holds Salah in exceptionally high regard as he places the 31-year-old amongst the Premier League’s greatest wingers of all time. The 88-cap international has been a talisman on Merseyside since his arrival at Anfield in July 2017. He arrived from AS Roma for £34.5m.
The PFA nominates Arsenal star Bukayo Saka for its 2023 Player of the Year award
Salah has so far won titles across the 2018/19 Champions League, 2019/20 Premier League, 2021/22 EFL Cup and the 2021/22 FA Cup at Liverpool. He also helped the Reds win the FIFA Club World Cup in 2019. Salah also won the PFA Player of the Year award in 2018 and 2022.
Saka and Arsenal captain Martin Odegaard are now in contention for the 2023 PFA Player of the Year award. Robin van Persie was the last Gunners star to win the award in 2012. He was also the fourth Gunners star to do so after Liam Brady, Dennis Bergkamp and Thierry Henry.
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The PFA has nominated Saka for its gong after helping Arsenal to a surprise Premier League title challenge in 2022/23. He finished the season with 14 goals and 11 assists. Only Gabriel Martinelli and Odegaard (15) outscored the 21-year-old at Emirates Stadium in the league.
Saka recorded 15 goals across all competitions in 2022/23 as Arsenal’s joint-top scorer with Odegaard and Martinelli. He also offered a team-high 11 assists through 48 fixtures, having featured the joint-most times with Gabriel Magalhaes. Saka only missed one game all term.
Jamie Carragher uses Liverpool winger Mohamed Salah to challenge Bukayo Saka
Despite Liverpool’s struggles as a team, Salah offered 30 goals and 16 assists in 51 games in 2022/23. He further offered 19 of his goals plus 12 assists during 38 Premier League games. It was only Salah’s second campaign with fewer than 20 goals since he signed for Liverpool.
Salah also scored 19 goals in 2019/20 and has offered double-digits for assists each season except for 2020/21 with five. Saka, on the other hand, scored double-digits for the first time in 2021/22 with 11. He then recorded double-digits for assists for the first time in 2022/23.
So, given Salah’s longevity at the top, Carragher still deems the Liverpool forward ahead of Arsenal star Saka as the Premier League’s best winger. Although Salah was not delivering at the same level as Saka at 21, having left Chelsea aged 22 with two goals in 13 career games.
“Mo Salah, I think Salah is the best right-winger,” Carragher told Sky Sports. “I think Saka is running him really close.
“I think the form we saw from Saka last season and how he started in the first game, we need to see that for a two or three-year period. Salah has been a revelation for Liverpool and probably one of the best [wingers] we’ve seen in the Premier League.”