Liverpool superstar Mo Salah to celebrate Eid al-Fitr Muslim holiday with family in Egypt
Mo Salah arrived Tuesday early morning to his birthplace Nagrig, in Gharbia Governorate, where he joined his wife Magi and daughter Mecca, who arrived one day before him.
The famed footballer will fast the last day of Ramadan in his home village, where he will celebrate Eid al-Fitr, the festival that marks the end of the Islamic holy month, in Egypt starting tomorrow.
Mohammed Salah met his wife in school in their home town Nagrig in Egypt. They married in 2013.
Eid al-Fitr, literally "the celebration of breaking fast", is celebrated across the Muslim world and it is usually celebrated with families.
Muslims are encouraged to start their day on Eid al-Fitr with a date, a break from the 29 or 30 days of fasting before it, and head to the celebratory prayers.
Other traditions encouraged include praying in an outdoor location – many local fields and parks are often transformed for this use.
Glorifying chants to God are given ahead of the celebratory prayer, not dissimilar to what Muslims say in their pilgrimage to Mecca, and Muslims try to find an alternate way back home.
As Muslims celebrate the end of a month of fasting, many will indulge in lavish spreads and invite family and friends over – and many cultures will gift children either presents or money.
Muslims who are able to are encouraged to pay alms, zakat al-fitr (alms of breaking fast) which allows those who are less well-off to participate in the celebrations of Eid al-Fitr, and promotes a sense of social harmony and responsibility.
Mohammed Salah is not only a record-breaking goal-scorer, with 32 goals to his name in 38 games of the 2017-18 English Premier League, he is also one of the most visibly Muslim players in England, performing the Islamic sujood prostration to thank God whenever he scores a goal, an action which has been included in the FIFA 2019 video game.
Liverpool FC's manager, Jurgen Klopp said that Salah lives in a world "where people think '[Muslims] are all like this' or 'they are all like that'… it's nice to have somebody around full of joy, full of love and to do what he is doing around his religion". Salah's fame has been as much to do with his winning personality as his footballing skills.
Liverpool fans have been filmed singing pro-Islam chants ever since Mohammed Salah was signed. One of them went:
A gift from Allah..
He's always scoring,
It’s almost boring,
So please don’t take
A video of fans singing
If he's good enough for you
He's good enough for me
If he scores another few
Then I'll be Muslim too
Sitting in a mosque…
That's where I wanna be
also went viral last year.
On the other hand, fans of rival clubs have expressed hatred of Salah in Islamophobic terms on Twitter, with one Southampton fan saying he'd like to force feed Salah bacon and another doctoring a photo to show him as a suicide bomber.
On Saturday Mohammed Salah was celebrating with his family after Liverpool beat Tottenham Hotspur in the UEFA Champions' League
Follow us on Twitter: @The_NewArab