Mohamed Salah could compete for Egypt at Tokyo 2020 ©Getty Images

Egypt's under-23 football team manager Shawky Gharib has again expressed his desire to include star striker Mohamed Salah in the squad for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

The 28-year-old Salah would be eligible to compete at Tokyo 2020 as one of the three players over the age of 23 allowed to participate in the men's Olympic football competition.

"The team's technical staff and the Egyptian Football Association have the desire to call up Mohamed Salah for the Olympics," Gharib said, as reported by Ahram Online

"Salah is a world class player and I hope that he will be able to play with us in the Olympics."

Gharib also suggested that Salah could improve Egypt's medal chances at Tokyo 2020, using the example of Neymar's crucial role in Brazil's gold medal in the football contest at Rio 2016. 

"When you have such a player in your team, the objectives of the team would be different," Gharib said. 

"Brazil won the gold medal in Rio de Janeiro thanks to Neymar who led the Brazilian team in this competition."

Mohamed Salah scored three goals for Egypt during the London 2012 Olympic Games ©Getty Images
Mohamed Salah scored three goals for Egypt during the London 2012 Olympic Games ©Getty Images

The Olympics have been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic and rescheduled to July 23 to August 8 in 2021, with the football competition set to run from July 22 to August 7. 

If Salah was to compete at Tokyo 2020, he would likely miss the start of the 2021-2022 Premier League season with Liverpool. 

Another challenge could be this year's condensed football season, with domestic competitions having begun later than usual due to the global health crisis. 

The forward has also not always had the best relationship with the Egyptian Football Association and was involved in a dispute over image rights in 2018.

Salah, who helped Liverpool to UEFA Champions League and Premier League titles in recent years, has scored 43 goals in 68 appearances for Egypt. 

He was part of the team that reached the quarter-finals of the London 2012 Olympic Games, scoring three goals during the tournament. 

The country did not qualify for the competition at Rio 2016. 

Egypt's best finish in the Olympic football event is fourth, achieved at both Tokyo 1964 and Amsterdam 1928.