The Reds were able to prevent their star forward from participating in the tournament in Japan

Liverpool star Mohamed Salah will not be playing at the Olympics after the Reds prevented the forward from playing for Egypt in Japan.

Head coach Shawky Gharib dropped Salah from his 22-man team after Liverpool declined to release the Egyptian senior national team captain for the tournament that will begin later this month.

Arsenal’s Mohamed Elneny also will not play at the tournament, with teams on the men’s side fielding Under-23 squads and able to use three overage players.

Salah’s struggle

Liverpool were reluctant to release Salah for the Olympics, which is not part of FIFA’s calendar due to being considered a youth tournament.

Egypt Football Association president Ahmed Megahed said last month that while Liverpool were trying to prevent Salah from playing, he believed the 29-year-old would “find a way” to be at the Olympics.

However, Liverpool have won out and will have their star for pre-season.

Liverpool’s dilemma

The Olympics football competition is due to kick off on July 22 and run until August 7, seven days before the new Premier League campaign begins.

Salah would have missed the Reds’ entire pre-season schedule if he had linked up with his country and could have been a doubt for the Reds’ opening three top-flight fixtures against Norwich City, Burnley and Chelsea.

Liverpool will likely be without Salah in January for the Africa Cup of Nations, meaning they were reluctant to miss out on his services on two occasions in the 2021-22 season.

Egypt’s roster

The 22-man team is majorly dominated by Egyptian Premier League stars with Al Ahly goalkeeper Mohamed El-Shennawy among the overage players alongside former Stoke City and Huddersfield winger Ramadan Sobhi.

Also in the squad is 30-year-old Ahmed Hegazi who previously played for West Brom in the Premier League.

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