Even when surprising schoolkids in his native Egypt, Mohamed Salah can’t escape speculation over his Liverpool future, with one opportunistic child asking the question.
Salah will enter the final 18 months of his contract with the Reds in January, with both player and club eager to find a resolution to talks over an extension.
Despite the forward’s desire to stay at Anfield, there are clearly obstacles between him putting pen to paper, with reports claiming he is seeking a wage of around £400,000 a week.
Given his importance to Liverpool, there is cause to argue that Salah is worth that, with his world-class ability bringing him global fame.
He is no more acclaimed than in Egypt, however, and the joy among pupils at the Al Farooq Omar school in Cairo was clear to see as Salah surprised them for a video Q&A.
The Al Farooq Omar school is recognised as an Instant Network School (INS), which provides digital education to refugee and Egyptian students.
Salah is an INS ambassador, with the programme supporting over 129,000 refugee students and learners from local communities in six African countries.
Taking questions from the class, Salah laughed as he was asked “where do you want to go after Liverpool?”
“Are you a journalist?” he joked. “I still don’t know.
“I’m currently focused on the team. I’m happy here, and I’m focused on helping the national team in the World Cup qualifiers, and that’s the most important thing.”
It was a diplomatic answer from a player who is no doubt used to batting away questions about his future, but it suggests that an impasse remains in negotiations.
As he concluded his Q&A, the No. 11 was asked about his thoughts on the digital education provided by INS.
“I’m always a supporter of a proper education that benefits anyone and everyone that can benefit from new information,” he replied. “It’s a fantastic idea.”