Mo Salah was the stone that Chelsea football club rejected. But now, he is the cornerstone of English football. Rejection seems to have had a positive impact on Salah’s turnaround as a footballer. Rather than be discouraged, the Egyptian footballer seems to have learnt more from rejection and failure from his first spell in England.
He left Chelsea and has surged way beyond what any other player in England has achieved, and now any club in the world including Chelsea would be willing to pay any amount imaginable to get him into their team.
Salah scores in almost every game he plays for his club, Liverpool. If one thing has set the ‘Egyptian King’ apart this season, it is his sheer consistency and appetite for goals.
Salah has scored over 43 goals for Liverpool this season, taking the club to the brink of the Champions League final and giving himself a genuine chance of winning the Ballon d’Or.
Last year, Salah was named the BBC African Footballer of the Year, following a record number of votes, the Liverpool star won ahead of Gabon’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who is now plying his trade at Arsenal.
Mohamed Salah won the 2018 PFA (Professional Footballers’ Association) award known as the Players’ Player of the Year for his performances at Liverpool. He was handed the award ahead of another Chelsea reject – Kevin De Bruyne who is now the cornerstone of Manchester City team.
Let rejection be a stepping stone
De Bruyne, the Belgium international was sold by Chelsea to Wolfsburg in January 2014, when José Mourinho was in his second spell as the Blues boss, after he struggled to break into the first team. Since then, he has developed to become a world star.
Although, Kevin De Bruyne says he does not dwell over why he was rejected by former Chelsea manager Mourinho and thinks his frustrating time at Stamford Bridge was useful for his development and the player he is today.
De Bruyne, now managed by Pep Guardiola is one of the best players in England according to the PFA, along with Liverpool topscorer Mo Salah, who also failed to convince the Portuguese manager during his short spell in West London. The midfielder thinks both he and Egypt star Salah have simply benefited from their previous rejection.
Chelsea sold De Bruyne for £18m in 2014, two years, after City paid £52m for him. Today, De Bruyne is valued in excess of £180m.
Rejection does not necessarily mean you are worthless, it means that whosoever rejects you does not know your real value and your God given abilities. If Chelsea knew the true value of De Bruyne they would have done everything within their power to hang on to him.
Another person rejected by Chelsea was Romelu Lukaku, who is now the cornerstone at Manchester United.
Chelsea sold Lukaku for £28m in 2014. José Mourinho, at that time was the coach at Chelsea and he did not think Lukaku was good enough, only to repurchase him at Manchester United for £75m when he realised that Chelsea was willing to pay £80m for the 25-year-old to come back to Stamford Bridge.
Lukaku is now the top scorer at Manchester United with over 26 goals and nine assists this year alone, ahead of Paul Pogba and Alexis Sanchez.
The Belgian striker has now scored more than 100 Premier League goal in England since leaving Chelsea and becomes the fifth youngest player to reach a century of top-flight goals behind Michael Owen, Robbie Fowler, Wayne Rooney, and Harry Kane.
The blame game has begun
Just because Salah has enjoyed an incredible debut campaign at Liverpool this year, scoring more than 43 goals in all competitions and being named PFA Player of the Year, the blame game has finally begun. Chelsea is blaming Mourinho for selling Salah to Roma in the summer of 2016, while Mourinho claims it was not his fault, it was Chelsea’s.
Mourinho has launched a furious rant over claims that he told Chelsea to sell Mo Salah, instead he lays the blame firmly at the management of Chelsea – his former Club.
Mourinho told ESPN “People say that I was the one that sold Salah and it is the opposite, I bought Salah.
But he came as a young kid, physically he was not ready, mentally he was not ready, socially and culturally he was lost and everything was tough for him.
We decided to put him on loan and he asked for that as well. He wanted to play more minutes, to mature, he wanted to go and we sent him on loan to Fiorentina, and at Fiorentina he started to mature gradually.
Chelsea decided to sell him, OK? And when they say that I was the one that sold him it is a lie. I bought him. I agreed to send him on loan, I thought it was necessary.”
“The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone.” ’These wise words although appeared first in Psalm 118:22, it is one of the New Testament’s most repeated phrases, recurring at Matthew 21:42, Mark 12:10, Luke 20:17, Acts 4:11 and 1 Peter 2:7. Perhaps because repetition is a powerful teaching tool.
This phrase teaches us that if you are rejected, like Salah, De Bruyne and Lukaku, it does not mean you are not good enough. It simply means that the person who rejected you did not see the value in you. But, others will if they get the chance to see your true worth and bring them to reality. Let every rejection be the motivation to make you aim to get better at whatever you do.