Liverpool Football Club witnessed a significant spike in followers and interest from the Middle East after star striker Mo Salah transferred to the club in 2017, according to the club's CEO Peter Moore.
Speaking to Arabian Business on the sidelines of the Dubai International Sports Conference on Wednesday, Moore said that Liverpool FC immediately noticed a surge in interest from the region after Salah transferred from Italian Club AS Roma.
“The moment we signed Mohammed, straight away we looked at our social media platforms and you could look at IP addresses and immediately see [a spike in followers], in particular from Egypt,” he said.
“But there is a Pan-Arabian pride, from all people in the Middle East, regardless of whether you are Egyptian. We saw Jordan, and we obviously saw the UAE,” he said.
“It breaks down some of the barriers you have in this region when it’s an Arab player that is playing, and not only playing, but arguably one of the best players in the world and scoring goals for fun.”
A fan favourite among Liverpool social media followers, he said, are the often-humorous posts illustrating Salah’s relationship with Liverpool centre back and Croatia international Dejan Lovren, which Moore compared to the 1970s TV series “the Odd Couple”.
As an example, Moore pointed to a recent Instagram post from Lovren in which he posted a screenshot from WhatsApp in which Salah wished him a happy new year and asked when training was scheduled the following day.
“Their ability to share their ‘bromance’ is hilarious. They publish texts from one another on their social media platforms and get millions of views,” he said. “This is the kind of ongoing sitcom that the fans love, in the millions of people.”For all the latest business news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.
Subscribe to Arabian Business' newsletter to receive the latest breaking news and business stories in Dubai,the UAE and the GCC straight to your inbox.