Egypt 'optimistic' Mohamed Salah can play in World Cup after shoulder injury

KIEV, Ukraine -- The Egyptian Football Association is "optimistic" Mohamed Salah will be able to play in the World Cup, after he suffered what Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp called a "really serious injury" in Saturday's Champions League final defeat.

Salah sprained ligaments in his left shoulder, according to the Egyptian FA, which said national team doctor Mohammed Abulela had been informed by Liverpool's medical team. Liverpool did not publicly confirm the extent of the injury on Saturday.

Salah, 25, left the pitch in tears when he was forced to come off injured in the 29th minute after landing awkwardly on his left shoulder following a duel with Sergio Ramos. He tried to continue but went down to the turf once again four minutes later in obvious pain and pointing to his left shoulder, before he was replaced by Adam Lallana.

The Egyptian FA wrote on Twitter that the organisation was "optimistic" he could return for the World Cup, which starts in less than three weeks.

Egypt expect him to be sidelined for about two weeks, according to the Egyptian government's minister of state for youth and sports, Khaled Abd Elaziz, who wrote on Facebook that Salah was still likely to be named in the team's final squad, which will be announced June 4.

Salah, who boarded Liverpool's team bus after the 3-1 defeat to Real Madrid with a sling on his left arm, will remain with Liverpool before joining up with his national team in Italy, the minister wrote.

"It's a serious injury, a really serious injury," Klopp said in his postmatch news conference. "He is in the hospital for an X-ray. It's either the collarbone or the shoulder itself. It doesn't look good, that's it."

This season, Salah has emerged as a top contender to rival Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo and Barcelona's Lionel Messi for the Ballon d'Or and other player of the year awards after scoring 44 goals in all competitions.

He is far and away the biggest star in Egypt and key to the country's hopes in Russia, and the injury may mean he is denied the chance to take part in the nation's first World Cup since 1990.

"It's very bad for Mo, very bad for us and very bad for Egypt," Klopp added. "That's part of the sport. I don't like that part of the sport, but it's part of the sport and things like this can happen."

Egypt begin the World Cup against Uruguay on June 15 before facing hosts Russia and Saudi Arabia in Group A.

Dani Carvajal's hopes of playing at the World Cup with Spain are also in doubt after the Real Madrid right-back pulled up with a leg injury in the first half.