Egypt boss Carlos Quieroz risks the WRATH of his ‘friend’ Cristiano Ronaldo as the former Manchester United assistant crowns Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah as the ‘BEST player on the planet’ right now
- Carlos Quieroz is busy preparing for the start of the Africa Cup of Nations
- The Egypt boss was asked about the star power of his winger Mohamed Salah
- Salah was hailed as the ‘best player on the planet at the minute’ by his boss
- Quieroz quickly interjected that that assessment may upset Cristiano Ronaldo
- The Portuguese coach and Ronaldo have had a close relationship for many years
Carlos Quieroz may find himself with an apology to make after he overlooked ‘friend’ Cristiano Ronaldo to crown Mohamed Salah as the ‘best player on the planet’.
Quieroz, who will manage Salah at the Africa Cup of Nations this month in his role as Egypt manager, made the admission in a pre-tournament conference this week.
The Portuguese coach and Ronaldo have enjoyed a close relationship over the years from the pair’s days at Manchester United together, when Quieroz worked as assistant to Sir Alex Ferguson.
Mohamed Salah has been hailed as the ‘best player on the planet’ by his boss Carlos Quieroz
Quieroz, now Egypt boss, thought his comment may upset ‘friend’ Cristiano Ronaldo (right, pictured alongside the coach, left, when he was in charge of the Portugal national team)
But Quieroz put sentiment to one side when he was asked about the qualities of Salah, his team’s star man at AFCON.
Salah was described by his boss as a ‘champion’ who can inspire his team-mates to glory in Cameroon.
Asked why he has come to that conclusion, the Egypt boss said: ‘Probably you agree with me that in our team we have the best player on the planet at the moment.
‘If my friend Cristiano Ronaldo listens to this, he will be upset!’
Quieroz once described Ronaldo as a ‘champion and a superman’ and so his high praise of Salah, particularly given his loyalties to Manchester United, has caught the eye.
Ronaldo returned to Manchester United this season, where he previously worked with Quieroz
Quieroz, now in charge of Egypt, believes that Salah is now the best player at this moment
‘Cristiano is a champion, and as a player, he is Superman,’ Queiroz said back in 2008 when he was Portugal boss. ‘In terms of his mental approach to the game, he is so strong and so confident.’
Salah, affectionately known as ‘The Egyptian King’ on Merseyside, has been in electric form for Liverpool so far this season and his exit for AFCON represents a blow to their faltering title bid.
He has netted 23 goals and added nine assists and such displays have won rave reviews from across the globe, something that has not been lost on his national team boss.
Asked if Egypt are the favourites to win the AFCON title in Cameroon given Salah’s purple patch of form so far this season, Quieroz urged caution but did accept his star man’s ‘winning mentality’ is vital.
Salah has been in sensational form for Liverpool this season having scored 23 goals so far
‘We are not going to AFCON to take a walk, we are going to win… and to do that we need a winning mentality,’ Quieroz added.
‘Salah has that and he can instill that in the team. He is the best player in the world right now, and with that comes belief and confidence.
‘We are a team, not one player. We build a team. But we build it with the best player in the world included, and that brings the right mentality into the team.’
Egypt have been drawn into Group D alongside Nigeria, Sudan and Guinea-Bissau.
Quieroz’s side play their first group game against Nigeria on January 11 in Garoua.
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