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Sorting through the Salah rumors

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The uncertainty surrounding the pacey winger hasn't changed much in the past week, despite Fiorentina paying Chelsea for the renewal of his loan

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After a blistering start to his Fiorentina career, Mohamed Salah’s future seemed set. But what appeared to be a sealed deal has turned head over heels. As per reports in the Italian press, the player is unsure of whether he wants to stay with the team for the 15/16 season.

We at Viola Nation reported on interest in the Egyptian from other clubs about a week ago, and unfortunately those voices have not quited; in fact they have intensified. Fiorentina are of course very keen to keep the forward according to Gianluca Di Marzio. Salah arrived in January on a six month loan with the option for a further year. The club have already paid Chelsea a fee of €1 million to extend the loan, well in advance of the July 1st deadline. But despite the Viola making all the right moves, the final decision still rests with the player. The generally reliable Di Marzio reports interest from Atletico Madrid, Inter, Milan, and Roma, who have been increasingly linked with the player who had a terrific half season in purple.

Chelsea have set a €25 million asking price to purchase Salah outright, and also seem quite willing to let the Egyptian spend another year on loan at Fiorentina if their asking price is not met. From a Fiorentina perspective, Salah agreeing to another year should be enough to seal the deal. But with the managerial merri-go-round ensuring the departure of Montella and the arrival of Sousa, Salah wishes to sit down and chat with the new manager before giving his final blessing to the deal.

However, the perhaps-biased Gazzetta dello Sport has also hinted at the player wanting a pay rise. This might be tough given the player’s particular loan/contract situation, with Chelsea setting his wages and Fiorentina paying some or all of this amount. Whether the raise would come from the Italians or the English is unclear and further muddies the dark and murky waters. It’s an enigma, wrapped in a riddle, trussed up inside the hideous clanking clockwork of the world of football transfers. We’re unlikely to find out anything concrete until it arrives from official sources (either Fiorentina, Chelsea, or Salah himself), so strap yourself in and hope for the best.