Liverpool star Mo Salah injured his shoulder during the Champions League final because he broke his Ramadan fast, an Islamic preacher has claimed.
Mubarak al Bathali said that “God punished him” for eating before the game in Kiev against Real Madrid on Saturday.
The Egyptian forward sprained his shoulder as he clashed with Sergio Ramos during the first half, before the Reds lost 3-1.
Kuwaiti preacher Bathali said that playing football “is not a legitimate excuse for breakfast” during Ramadan.
He said there was no excuse because jihadists fast despite being “in a state of war and facing the enemy”.
He did add that “the door of repentance is open”.
Bathali clarified that Salah breaking his fast to play football was the sin, but would have been all right if he had eaten breakfast to travel from the UK to Ukraine.
Before the match Liverpool physiotherapist Ruben Pons confirmed Salah – a hero across the Muslim world – would break his fast for the final after discussions with a nutritionist.
During Ramadan, Muslims fast during daylight hours for a month in between two crescent moons.
However, there are exemptions including travel and severe illness.
The preacher did not mention anything about Salah’s fellow devout Muslim team-mates Emre Can and Sadio Mane, neither of whom were injured in the final.
Real Madrid’s Karim Benzema is also Muslim.
More than 500,000 people have signed a petition calling for UEFA and FIFA to punish Ramos, rather than God, for injuring Salah during the final.
However, UEFA confirmed on Tuesday that the Madrid defender would not be punished for the incident.
Salah is due to represent Egypt at the World Cup in three weeks, with the hopes of a nation on his shoulders after he scored the penalty which saw them qualify for the first time since 1990.
The team’s coach has said he is hopeful the Premier league player of the year will be fit to play.