Former Premier League referee Kieth Hackett has advised Jurgen Klopp to discourage Mo Salah from taking off his jersey when celebrating future goals.
The Egyptian international earned his sixth yellow card in a red shirt for his shirtless celebration against Crystal Palace – his third caution for such an act.
“Taking your shirt off is an automatic yellow card offence,” the Englishman told Football Insider.
“We might be amused by it and love the goals, I do, I think he’s a brilliant player
“Surely his manager ought to have a word with him and say ‘You’re heading towards five yellow cards which is a suspension, I want you to avoid that’.
“You don’t want to take the elation away from a player but you’ve got to have a degree of self-control.
“He’s got into that habit. It’s his way of saluting his own goal.”
The 77-year-old did note that the law – initially ‘nonsense’, in his opinion – was brought about to take into account the contrasting cultures of various nations watching the games in question.
“In reality, we have to get to the point of why this law is in. It’s FIFA and IFAB who create the laws of the game. In certain countries, showing the skin of the body is against their religion and culture. We have to remember this is a global game.
“When it was introduced, I thought ‘What a nonsense this is’. But it’s part of the culture of the game around the world that this law has been introduced.”
Given the global reach of the English top-flight, one can understand the underlying logic that guided the creation of the law in question.
However, just as we may accept what is culturally (or, in this instance, not) acceptable in various nations, we have to take into account that the vast majority would not consider Salah’s actions in a sporting event immoral.
At this point, we’d certainly be inclined to question the continuation of such a rule, which appears to earn little else than ridicule for its continued existence.