Mohamed Salah was all smiles as Liverpool trained for their Champions League quarter-final first leg against Benfica.
The star striker looked relaxed ahead of the Reds' decisive push for an unprecedented quadruple. It was a far cry from the sombre scenes during the World Cup qualifier defeat against Senegal where the Egyptian was targeted by laser pointers as he lined up to take his penalty in a shootout.
Manager Jurgen Klopp said he hoped Salah bounces back from the twin disappointments of missing out on a World Cup spot after losing the Africa Cup of National final - both to Sadio Mane's Senegal.
“I’m obviously really happy for Sadio that he could make it [to the World Cup] and I’m obviously very disappointed and feel [for] Mo,” Klopp had said earlier in the week. “I don’t think that the situation around with the penalty and the laser(s) was particularly cool. That’s clear as well. So, I feel for him, but I’m happy for Sadio as well. That’s football."
Liverpool are well and truly into the Premier League title race after a 10-game winning run, and Tuesday's clash against Benfica in Lisbon will show how far they reach in their quest to add to League Cup title, with the FA Cup still in their sights.
Benfica offer a tricky challenge after they knocked out Barcelona and Ajax. Benfica's impressive run in the Champions League has belied a tumultuous domestic season. They parted ways with manager Jorge Jesus following a 3-0 defeat by Porto and just seven wins out from their first 15 matches.
Their form has not been much better under interim coach Nelson Verissimo, who began with only two wins from his first seven. They sit third in the Primeira Liga, 12 points adrift of leaders Porto and six behind Sporting Lisbon in second.