In case we needed any more reasons to admire Mohamed Salah, the Egyptian footballer has just expressed his support for women in Egypt and across the Muslim world.
The 26-year-old Liverpool forward was recently named among the world's 100 most influential people by Time Magazine, making the list alongside international personalities such as U.S. President Donald Trump, former U.S. first lady Michelle Obama, and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg.
In his interview with the magazine, Salah took the opportunity to call for gender equality in the region and urge his compatriots to improve their treatment of women.
"We need to change the way we treat women in our culture," said Salah, a devout Muslim who has a 5-year-old daughter reportedly named Mekka, in honor of the holiest city in Islam.
He went on to say that his awareness on women's rights has evolved over the years, explaining:
"I support the woman more than I did before because I feel like she deserves more than what they give her now, at the moment."
Salah insisted the topic should be a top priority, saying, "That [is the way it] has to be. It's not optional."
This comes as women in Egypt face a wide array of struggles including alarming rates of female genital mutilation, forced marriages, and sexual harassment.
The footballer also talked about his journey to stardom and admitted to being subject to "a little bit of pressure" at times. But, he also asserted he is proud to represent his country.
As for his lifestyle as a football star, Salah said he leads a "normal" life and enjoys spending time with his daughter. "Most of the time I stay at home, I don't like to go out," he explained.
Writing for Time Magazine about the Egyptian star, English comedian and television host John Oliver described Salah as a "humble, thoughtful, funny man" and an "iconic figure for Egyptians, Scousers [people from Liverpool] and Muslims."
"Mo Salah is a better human being than he is a football player. And he's one of the best football players in the world," wrote Oliver. "I absolutely love him."
"You'd be hard-pressed to find a professional athlete in any sport less affected by their success or status than Mo," Oliver added.
Salah was featured in the "titans" category of Time magazine's list. Earlier this month, Salah made history when he made his 50th Premier League goal for Liverpool F.C., reaching that milestone in fewer games than anyone else in the club's history. Last April, he was named as the Premier League's Player of the Year, becoming the first Egyptian and the second player from Africa to ever win the award.
Salah is not the only Egyptian to make the list. Egyptian-American Oscar-winning actor Rami Malek was also named among the most influential personalities in the world, appearing in the "artists" category.