Mohamed Salah statue criticized for barely resembling soccer star
Liverpool's Mohamed Salah stands on the pitch during warmup before the English Premier League soccer match between Arsenal and Liverpool at Emirates stadium in London, England, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. (AP Photo/Tim Ireland)
The Associated Press
Published Monday, November 5, 2018 11:36AM EST
CAIRO -- A bronze statue of Mohamed Salah unveiled Monday at an international youth gathering in Egypt has been criticized for its poor resemblance to the Liverpool striker.
The statue depicts Salah with a disproportionately large head and small arms stretched in the celebratory pose the 26-year-old Egyptian took in the latter part of last season.
The figure, made by artist Mai Abdullah, has Salah's trademark curly hair and is standing on what appears to be a pot for plants.
Salah has not spoken publicly about the statue and Abdullah was not immediately available for comment, but the artist defended her work in a Facebook post, saying the statue was made as part of an online program to teach sculpting.
"The negative comments will not frustrate or have an effect on me, but I do hope that people would learn the art of polite and respectful criticism," Abdullah wrote in response to a wave of ridicule on social media.
Last year, Cristiano Ronaldo had a bust unveiled that was also criticized for its lack of a resemblance.