Jamie Carragher has praised Liverpool for figuring out a way to re-sign Mohamed Salah for another three years, believing the team had to do whatever they could to retain the "Liverpool legend".
Salah, 30, is coming off a season where he led the Premier League in both goals (23, tied with Son Heung-min) and assists (13), but there were rumours swirling about the club potentially looking to cash in on him with a transfer if he indicated he would not sign an extension.
Ultimately the deal got done, with Salah now tied to the club on a wage of £350,000 per week until the end of the 2024-25 season.
Speaking to Sky Sports News, Carragher said it would have been painful to see Sadio Mane and Salah depart in quick succession, and that the sale of Divock Origi likely gave Liverpool the financial flexibility to meet their Egyptian star's demands.
"Losing Mane, it was sad to see that front three break up," he said. "Lots of Liverpool fans over the last few months were kind of resigned to the fact that Salah might see out the last 12 months of his contract and then move on.
"Perhaps the club were not maybe prepared to go the numbers he wanted or he felt he deserved, and he would leave the club.
"But I think the fact that Origi has moved on and Mane has moved on, and Liverpool have brought in maybe one attacking player who is on similar sorts of wages [in Darwin Nunez]. I think the fact that two have gone and one has come in means that they could maybe get closer to the numbers Salah wanted.
"I think everyone is just delighted Salah has signed, and fingers crossed he produces over the next three years what he has produced over the last five years – and I am sure that he can."
Carragher went on to discuss how it was a change in the club's spending strategy, but a necessary one when you have a talent as rare as Salah.
"Liverpool have never really gone to that level in terms of numbers, certainly under [owners Fenway Sports Group]" he said.
"I think that a lot of Liverpool fans respect that model because it has brought a lot of success to the club, so they almost accept how they go about things – not just with player contracts, but also with signing players.
"I don't think there would have been much criticism if Salah had left, but I think now and again when you have someone as special as Salah, the rule that you have to have in place, you have to certainly bend them.
"Maybe not necessarily break them, but you have to maybe go closer to a position that maybe you don't want to.
"Salah is already a Liverpool legend – and if he'd moved on in 12 months, he'd have still been a legend.
"What players like him, Alisson, Van Dijk, Mane – how they've changed the face of Liverpool Football Club along with the manager means they will all be legends no matter when they move on for the club and for whatever reason they move on from the club.
"I think the supporters are very thankful for what these players have given. Salah will finish his time in the top five or six players ever to have played for the club."