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  1. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain believes he can add a missing element to the squad to push them to even greater heights this season.The lack of activity by the Reds during the summer transfer window was a widely discussed issue during the off-season, but Jurgen Klopp was more than satisfied with what he had at his disposal.Klopp would have known he had a handy ace up his sleeve in the English international who missed the majority of the last campaign due to a serious knee injury, only playing a handful of minutes towards the end of the season.By his own admission, it has been a long and gruelling road back to full fitness for with some setbacks along the way.However the start of this season has seen him take major steps forward making eight appearances including four starts.Oxlade-Chamberlain knows the more minutes he plays, it will increase his confidence in his quest to play a significant part for the team.The Official site reported Oxlade-Chamberlain as saying:“For me, off the back of what the boys achieved last season, it is a case of: Can I add that little bit extra, can I add a little bit more to help us as a squad?“They did terrific last season and the boys in midfield played a lot of minutes. They played their part, they all rotated really well and came up with really important goals.“It’s on me to try to bring a little something: run with the ball, link the play and fit in with the rhythm of the boys up front to help them. What they achieved last year was extraordinary.“To miss out [on the title] in the way we did was heartbreaking, so as a team we need to do better.“With teams like Man City, and how relentless they are, we know we have to do more.“ For me as an individual, my goals are to get back in and around the team and to help push this team forward a little bit more. “If we can do that, I can start thinking about what I need to add to my game. For now, the next step is to help the team.”It seems like he has been around for a long time, but the midfielder is right in his prime at 26 years of age.Before his ill-timed injury against Roma in the first leg of the Champions League semi-final in April 2018, Oxlade-Chamberlain had stamped his claim to be one of the more important players in the squad.His direct running from midfield and creative mindset gave the team a new dimension in the aftermath of the Philippe Coutinho departure to Barcelona. Having shown what he can do once before, Ox hopes to recreate that impact this season.“I guess I feel like a new option to him compared to last season because the manager didn’t have me at his disposal, to be able to use me.“In that sense I guess I am like a new person in the group he can use and I think I can definitely bring my qualities and provide something different to the other boys in my position. “We all have our own qualities, we all bring different things, so my job is to do the things I was doing before I was injured.“I’m another weapon in his armoury again now, although I’m not that new here!”When players come back from a long layoff, their play can be inhibited and they sadly some do not reach the same level that they were at prior to their injury.Oxlade-Chamberlain is determined to not let that happen to him.“I still try to play in the same way. I don’t try to hold back on doing the things I used to do.“ I haven’t had those games in a row to be at the level yet I was when I left off, but I wouldn’t say I’m a different player. “I’ll still try to dribble. “I’ll still sometimes go into tackles that I should leave, but I go nibbling in anyway. I think that’s a good thing.“ I don’t want to waste my time worrying about what I love doing, and what I need to do, every day.“ Hopefully I can keep getting better, keep getting minutes and get back to where I was when I left off.” View full article
  2. Report by Dave Usher Is there no limit to the resolve of this team? While the rest of the traditional "Big Six" are finding new and more amusing ways to lose games, our lads are just digging deep and pulling wins out of the fire and overcoming whatever setbacks they face. The scoreline might have been close but the game really wasn't. We won't face many better teams than Leicester this season but in terms of how difficult the game was we had far more trouble with Sheffield United last week. That's a measure of how well we played in this one. The first half was really good but we didn’t have the goals to show for what was a dominant effort. Defensively it was almost a flawless display in the opening 45. Leicester didn’t have a sniff. They like to play more of a possession game these days but that’s difficult to do when you don’t have the ball! They still have it in them to play on the break using Maddison’s vision and Vardy’s pace, but we snuffed out any of those opportunities too. Our two centre backs were outstanding. We expect that from Van Dijk of course, but Lovren was a surprise inclusion and had the more difficult task because Vardy was always going to try and pull onto him rather than Virgil. Klopp said afterwards that he’s never seen a team defend Vardy as well as this. The key to defending Vardy is to not have to defend him. Don’t let them get the ball into the spaces he exploits. For the most part we did that brilliantly, but on the couple of occasions he did get something to run onto Lovren was up to the challenge. I thought Leicester defended really well too though, especially Soyuncu. He didn’t do anything spectacular but he just always seemed to be in the right place to snuff out potential danger. He read the game well and any time we tried to get in down the right he was across on the cover. Selling Maguire for £80m without weakening the side is a great bit of business. Maybe United should have bought this lad instead. He will have been expecting to come up against Salah but for some reason Klopp switched his front three around and none of them were in their usual positions. Mané started on the right, Firmino left and Salah through the middle. Initially I thought maybe Klopp wanted Mo’s speed through the middle. On reflection I think he wanted to restrict the threat of their full backs by using Bobby wide. It worked a treat defensively, typified by Sadio frequently getting back and stopping Chilwell getting crosses in on several occasions. It did take a little away from us in attack though and for me it’s not a co-incidence that when we finally made the breakthrough it came in a brief spell when they all went back to their usual positions. That’s not to say we didn’t create anything prior to that, because we did. Milner missed the target with a couple of very presentable chances (one following some brilliant play by Trent) and Bobby just couldn’t get enough on another top drawer delivery by Trent. We also had a good penalty shout I thought when Van Dijk looked like he was shoved in the back while in mid-air attacking a corner. There was a big shout but the ref gave nothing, and VAR doesn’t over-rule refs. I haven’t even seen a replay of it, it’s just what I thought at the time and I might be wrong. Our goal was a work of art though. It started with keeper and as Leicester tried to press we just played our way through it. Milner’s movement was great, moving into space and making angles for the pass. The whole thing looked like a rehearsed move that they’ve worked on time and again in training. Milner knew where Mané was but finding him wasn’t going to be easy. The window to make that pass was tiny and not only did it need to be inch perfect, it needed to played at the right pace too. I don’t actually think there is anything that Johnny Evans can do to prevent that. He was in a good position but the pass was too good and once it was past him it was game over. Sadio never looked like he was missing that did he? He was in total control of that situation at all times and took it in stride before rolling it into the corner. Brilliant goal but from Leicester’s point of view I don’t think there’s a thing they could have done to prevent that, other than not try and press us to begin with. This is just a teaser, click here to view the full article Please note that Match Reports are only available to website subscribers. Subscriptions cost just £2 a month (you need to register first) and can be purchased here.
  3. James Milner says that he is in the dark regarding the possibility of extending his career at the Reds.The popular veteran is entering the final 12 months of his current contract and despite some early progress, the 33 year-old said there has been no update for some time.The Liverpool Echo reported the midfielder as saying:“As it stands, last year we spoke to the club and asked them if they wanted to do something and they said not at that time."We haven’t heard anything since, so that’s where we are at."Jurgen Klopp spoke of his complete admiration of Milner a couple of days ago saying that he is a manager's dream because he gives his all every time he takes to the pitch and cares so much to the overall cause.The manager said having Milner around is non-negotiable as far as he is concerned.“Character, talent, all that stuff is on the highest level. It’s strange, only in sports do we speak about a 33-year-old person as if he was old."Milly, especially, with all the things he has, there are still a few good years to come. "And for a guy like him, there is always a door open in our club."As long as I am here, there will always be a place for a guy like him.”Milner who joined the Reds in the summer of 2015 was thankful for those kind words by his manager."It’s obviously nice. All I can do is concentrate on my football and do what I can."But in terms of where I am with my contract, that’s what has happened up until now and I haven’t heard anything from the club.”Milner was an ever present for Klopp last season making 45 appearances in all competitions taking his career tally in the top flight to 516, which is the most of any current player.There is a common school of thought that once you approach the mid 30s it is time for a footballer to look at other options, however the fitness fanatic doesn't fit the bill of someone appraching the end of his career just yet.To the contrary, Milner feels he has a fair bit left in the tank."Yeah, I’d like to think so.."Everyone pipes on about my age and stuff I understand you are going to get that."There are three things to it: availability, fitness and performance level. Hopefully I am delivering all three.“I am just going to keep concentrating on my football, keep contributing to Liverpool and be the best player I can be for as long as possible.” View full article
  4. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain believes he can add a missing element to the squad to push them to even greater heights this season.The lack of activity by the Reds during the summer transfer window was a widely discussed issue during the off-season, but Jurgen Klopp was more than satisfied with what he had at his disposal.Klopp would have known he had a handy ace up his sleeve in the English international who missed the majority of the last campaign due to a serious knee injury, only playing a handful of minutes towards the end of the season.By his own admission, it has been a long and gruelling road back to full fitness for with some setbacks along the way.However the start of this season has seen him take major steps forward making eight appearances including four starts.Oxlade-Chamberlain knows the more minutes he plays, it will increase his confidence in his quest to play a significant part for the team.The Official site reported Oxlade-Chamberlain as saying:“For me, off the back of what the boys achieved last season, it is a case of: Can I add that little bit extra, can I add a little bit more to help us as a squad?“They did terrific last season and the boys in midfield played a lot of minutes. They played their part, they all rotated really well and came up with really important goals.“It’s on me to try to bring a little something: run with the ball, link the play and fit in with the rhythm of the boys up front to help them. What they achieved last year was extraordinary.“To miss out [on the title] in the way we did was heartbreaking, so as a team we need to do better.“With teams like Man City, and how relentless they are, we know we have to do more.“ For me as an individual, my goals are to get back in and around the team and to help push this team forward a little bit more. “If we can do that, I can start thinking about what I need to add to my game. For now, the next step is to help the team.”It seems like he has been around for a long time, but the midfielder is right in his prime at 26 years of age.Before his ill-timed injury against Roma in the first leg of the Champions League semi-final in April 2018, Oxlade-Chamberlain had stamped his claim to be one of the more important players in the squad.His direct running from midfield and creative mindset gave the team a new dimension in the aftermath of the Philippe Coutinho departure to Barcelona. Having shown what he can do once before, Ox hopes to recreate that impact this season.“I guess I feel like a new option to him compared to last season because the manager didn’t have me at his disposal, to be able to use me.“In that sense I guess I am like a new person in the group he can use and I think I can definitely bring my qualities and provide something different to the other boys in my position. “We all have our own qualities, we all bring different things, so my job is to do the things I was doing before I was injured.“I’m another weapon in his armoury again now, although I’m not that new here!”When players come back from a long layoff, their play can be inhibited and they sadly some do not reach the same level that they were at prior to their injury.Oxlade-Chamberlain is determined to not let that happen to him.“I still try to play in the same way. I don’t try to hold back on doing the things I used to do.“ I haven’t had those games in a row to be at the level yet I was when I left off, but I wouldn’t say I’m a different player. “I’ll still try to dribble. “I’ll still sometimes go into tackles that I should leave, but I go nibbling in anyway. I think that’s a good thing.“ I don’t want to waste my time worrying about what I love doing, and what I need to do, every day.“ Hopefully I can keep getting better, keep getting minutes and get back to where I was when I left off.”
  5. Saturday Oct 5: L 2 Leicester 1 Footy is mad these days. The last couple of years has completely changed how we perceive results. A draw at home with the third or fourth best team in the country has never been a bad result. It isn’t always a good one, but it's ok. At least it always used to be. Now, any dropped points feels massive so that last gap Milner pen seems bigger than it probably actually is. I don’t think this is how it’s always going to be, but it is how it is right now as a direct result of what City have done over the last couple of seasons. The scars from last year run deep and any point dropped feels like it could be decisive, which is ridiculous when you think about it as we're not going to win all 38 games (although going into the season I thought we might need to win 34 to improve on 2nd place). For all we know City might not get anywhere near 100 points this season though, and if that’s the case then as fans we can chill out a bit because this feeling of “needing to win” every single game is fucking exhausting. Last season was great because we won number six but the stress of that title challenge was brutal because there’s just no margin for error. It’s probably helped us though, because we’ve had a few games this season where we could have dropped points but didn’t. This is the closest call we’ve had so far but Chelsea and Sheff United weren’t exactly comfortable either. The lads know how to get it done though. Getting a penalty so late on is a bit fortunate (although it was a pen) but not when you look at the last ten minutes as a whole. After conceding, we regrouped and then piled on the pressure. The win was fully deserved. Brendan was talking some bollocks about them deserving a draw but they had two chances in 90 minutes and I’m fairly sure one of them was offside. We could have scored five. Klopp was made up with how the team played and you can tell he thinks a lot more of Leicester than most fans seem to. He says they’ll finish in the top four. Not sure I’d lock them in for it but they defo have a chance because there are big question marks over everyone other than us and City. Also today, the u18s came from a goal down to win 6-1 at Everton. These games always make me laugh because when Everton score their players go absolutely fucking nuts. Completely over the top in their celebrations because it’s just ingrained into everyone at that club to hate the redshite. I’ve been to loads of these games and it’s always the same when they score. Same thing happened here, but then the young Reds just slapped them around and humiliated them. I like this team, especially the midfield. Cain and Clarkson are a joy to watch, two proper cultured little footballers, and I like the look of James Norris too. Sunday Oct 6: City lose, United lose and Everton are in the bottom three. Fucking hell, what a day. It’s hard to comprehend that we’re eight points ahead after only eight games. City have lost two and drawn one, which isn’t great (and is almost a crisis by their standards) but in the past would have normally seen them only a point or two off the top. As I said though, the bar has been raised. This time by us. Now they know how we felt last season, the pricks. They’ll get themselves back on track eventually but these problems they have aren’t going to be fixed in the next few weeks and there’s a chance for us to extend this lead and virtually make ourselves uncatchable. City will drop more points between now and Christmas, so the key is for us to make sure we drop less then them and then see where we are in January. The rest of the country all seem to be saying the title race is over and the only ones not saying it are Reds. Yet if this goes tits up you just know we’ll get mocked with “them deluded scousers thought they’d won it”. No-one I know thinks we’ve won it, how could we ever be that cocky and presumptuous when we haven’t won the league for so long? Maybe if we’d been enjoying a run like we had in the 80s we’d be full of that type of bravado, but that’s not the case. I’m not prepared to say we’ve got this in the bag but to be honest if I supported someone else I’d probably be looking at how good Liverpool are these days (and how wobbly City look) and I’d be thinking that it’s over. It’s only our own fears and insecurity stopping us thinking like that, but that's not a bad thing. Meanwhile, there was a weird line up for the 23s today. They won 3-2 against Wigan, but half the players you’d expect to play weren’t there. Surprisingly, Harvey Elliot did play though, and Yasser Larouci played centre forward. Dixon-Bonner scored twice and Tom Hill got the other. Joe Gerhart played for Wigan. He’s the 17 year old scouser we’ve been linked with. He looked class and scored twice. He looks like a better version of Bobby Duncan. Hopefully he’s less of a knobhead. To be fair it would be tough to be more of one. So there’s some talk that the FA are going to look into the incident at full time yesterday when that loser Ayoze Perez lost his shit and went for Robbo. Jeez, that’s the very definition of ‘nothing to see here, move along’. There’s no way anything will come of that as Robbo didn’t do anything and as much as I can’t stand that giraffe necked twat Ayoze, he didn’t really do much either. This is just a teaser, click to view the full article Please note that the Week that Was is only available to website subscribers. Subscriptions cost just £2 a month (you need to register first) and can be purchased here.
  6. “Everything's coming up Millhouse” was the phrase that kept coming to me as this weekend unfolded. We got a stoppage time penalty winner to go eight points clear, City lost at home to Wolves to keep us eight points clear, and then United lost at Newcastle to put Everton into the relegation zone. An absolute Bon Jovi of a weekend. It kicked off with Spurs plumbing new depths by getting spanked by Brighton. It doesn’t impact us as Spurs are no threat anymore, but it’s still fucking funny like. It’s one thing being torn apart by Gnabri, Coutinho and Lewandowski, but who in the blue hell is Aaron Connolly?? Never heard of him before this weekend. In fact, the first I heard of him was when I saw his name in a group chat on WhatsApp. “Aaron Connolly is lovely” declared John G. What the fuck??? Well this is a new development. I mean I’m good with it, live and let live, but I can’t say I’m not a little shocked. Then I see underneath he’s corrected himself by saying “lively!!”. Right, ok that makes sense. Except who the fuck is Aaron Connolly? Having watched MOTD I can reveal that Aaron Connolly is a teenage Irish striker who looks like a 12 year old with a fake beard glued to his face. He scored twice to add to Neil Maupay’s early opener as Brighton slapped Spurs around the Amex to collect their first win since they beat Watford by the same score on opening day. I’m tempted to say that maybe Brighton aren’t as bad as people think, but it’s probably just a case of Spurs being worse than anyone could have possibly imagined. Lloris gifted Brighton the opener with a trademark blunder. He’s good for half a dozen of these a season. That number will probably be less this time as he busted his elbow in the process of dropping this clanger and will now miss three months. It might be for the best really. The back up might not make as many special saves as arl Hugo, but he sure as hell won’t make the same kind of spectacular fuck ups either. Spurs were rancid though. It’s hard to believe just how bad they’ve been this season. The rot started last season even if most of us didn’t realise it at the time. At one stage they almost got themselves into the title race but then they just started losing games all over the fucking shop and ended up fourth. Reaching the CL Final and that fluke win over Ajax maybe masked the problems they were having, but there’s no hiding place now. They’re a mess. Credit to Brighton as they played well and fully deserved the win. Connolly was indeed lovely, I mean lively, and his second goal was a cracker. That result was surprising, shocking even. But the result that really made me do a double take on Saturday was at Carrow Road. Norwich have turned into a pumpkin since they beat Man City. It’s mad; you beat City and then a few weeks later you’re losing 5-1 to Aston fucking Villa. It could have been worse too as Villa missed a pen. Wesley was the culprit, although he had already scored two by that point so no real harm done. Grealish then scored a nice goal to make it 3-0. He’s probably a very good player but I struggle to see it as I’m so blinded with disdain for how he looks. I bet when he’s not wearing a footy kit he dresses like a "Peaky fucking Bloynder". Twat. Some cat called Hourihane (never heard of him before) lashed in number four and Douglas Luiz curled in a beauty to make it five. Great goal that. Think he scored one like that earlier in the season too? He’s got rid of the ridiculous hairstyle now though, an example his captain should probably follow. Norwich did manage a late consolation goal and the lad who scored it went and picked the ball up out of the net and ran back to the centre circle with it. It was stoppage time and they were 5-1 down, but 10/10 for optimism. This is just a teaser, click to view the full article Please note that PL Round Ups are only available to website subscribers. Subscriptions cost just £2 a month (you need to register first) and can be purchased here.
  7. Saturday Sep 22: So six years ago we paid City a million quid after it turned out that one of the scouts we took from them still had all their log ins and was able to keep an eye on who they were scouting. How do we know this? Because City have decided to leak this info now, six years after the fact. Officially their stance was ’no comment’ but they defy fed that story to the Times. These cunts are so transparent. Last week there was a Premier League meeting with all the clubs. Obviously I don’t know what was said, but it’s a safe bet that we’ve brought up the whole FFP thing and this is how they’ve reacted. The funny thing is though nobody gives a fuck about it. And why should they? It’s not like we hacked into their system. The daft bastards didn’t follow the first law of business. When an employee leaves for a rival, you make sure you change all your passwords and disable all their log in privileges. We don’t know exactly what went on here but if it had been a hacking then they wouldn’t have just accepted a settlement, because that’s really serious and it’s the kind of thing you get heavily sanctioned for. This just looks like City being careless. Let be fair, if you’re a scout that has moved to a new job and you log in to your account and you still have access to everything from your old club, of course you’re going to have a look. It would be weird not to. Here’s the thing though, when you look at the players we actually signed that year then we either took no notice of who they wanted, or they should be fucking paying us for the shite they inadvertently recommended. Sunday Sep 23: Chelsea 1 L 2 Get the fuck in. Massive three points. Don’t care if we deserved it or not and anyone who says Chelsea deserved a point will get no argument from me. It doesn’t matter, we won. We got the three points and we’ve safely negotiated one of the most difficult games we’ll have to face. In terms of talent, Chelsea re probably the third best team in the country. They might not finish third, but its between them and Spurs as to who has the third best talent level. They showed it today. We had problems with them but I suspect a big part of that was because we were leggy after the Napoli game. We were flagging in the last 20 minutes and couldn’t keep the ball. That’s not really us, so that’s why I put it down to fatigue. The added bonus of this win is that as well as picking up three points, we’ve kicked Man City in the bollocks. They won 8-0 yesterday and will have been thinking there was a good chance this would be the weekend when they started to make inroads on us. When we had the lead last year, we had a few performances like this that ended up being draws and it cost us. They’ll have been watching this with a massive sense of frustration. In other news, Bernardo Silva is in trouble after a ridiculous tweet he made taking the piss out of his mate Mendy. I can’t believe he did that you know. I mean, in this day and age how daft do you have to be to think you can do that and not cause a massive shitstorm? Spare me all the “Bernardo is a racist” shite though. He’s not racist, he’s just fucking stupid. Incredibly, inexplicably stupid. He’s not “a racist” though and it’s just fucking lazy to throw that at him. How many racists have a black best mate? Mendy seemingly didn’t have a problem with the tweet and there was obviously no malice intended. That isn’t the point though. It was a joke between friends, so text him the fucking picture if you must, don’t put it on social media for the entire world to see. As soon as you put it out there for millions of people, it no longer matters if Mendy is offended or not, as there’ll be countless other people who will be. I also wonder what Sterling thought? More to the point, I wonder what he’d think if it was some random fan sending the image and not his team-mate. I actually feel sorry for Bernardo here but ignorance isn’t really a defence. Has he been living under a rock? How can he not know that this kind of thing is no longer acceptable? It’s bizarre, but it’s not just this tweet either as there was some instagram stuff that was staggering as well. Intentional or not, he has to be banned for it otherwise the FA are leaving themselves open to all kinds of shit. Kick it Out are all over it, and no doubt that Piara Power twat will kick up a stink to get himself a bit of publicity like he did with the Suarez thing. It’s an unfortunate situation but it should be a teaching point, and not just for Bernardo. Hopefully someone at LFC will use this to re-enforce with all of our lads that they need to think long and hard before they post anything on social media. This is just a teaser, click to view the full article Please note that the Week that Was is only available to website subscribers. Subscriptions cost just £2 a month (you need to register first) and can be purchased here.
  8. Xherdan Shaqiri is not satisfied over his current playing status, but has no issue with manager Jurgen Klopp and believes he still has a big part to play as a senior member of the squad.In the main, Shaqiri has had a frustrating 2019, battling with niggling injuries and fierce competition for meaningful minutes.The Swiss international who is currently sidelined with a calf injury, has played a grand total of 29 minutes during this campaign, with 11 of those coming in the Community Shield against Man City.As someone who takes pride in his performance, Shaqiri is naturally frustrated.The Mirror (via Swiss publication Schweizer Illustrierte) reported Shaqiri as saying:“Of course I’m dissatisfied that I do not play more often.“If that is not the reaction of a pro, he’s in the wrong job. "He (Klopp) cannot personally discuss the role of each player, that’s normal.“We have a big, talented squad, and many have to wait for their chance. "I have never had a problem with the coach He knows that I am ready.“Not for a second have I regretted the move to Liverpool .The popular utility player talked about some of his personal highlights since making the move from Stoke.And how he believes his experience over many seasons can assist younger members of the squad. “Many wrote me off in Stoke, but who can claim to have switched directly from a relegated side to a Champions League winner?“I was in the starting XI in the return leg of the Champions League semi-final against Barcelona , which will go down in club history.“And because of my two goals to defeat everlasting rival Manchester United , they still often call me a legend.“Apart from the fact that I would like to play more, I’m happy in Liverpool. "I have a certain status in the team because I am one of the more experienced players. I think I’m one of the leaders." View full article
  9. Manchester City are currently 8 points behind Liverpool in the Premier League table after their shock loss to Wolves at the weekend. Could this mean that Liverpool are almost guaranteed to win the Premier League? Given how well they’ve been doing, it wouldn’t be a shock. It’s perhaps no surprise that City are now starting to falter. After all, they have had two years of excellent performances and they have dominated the league under Pep Guardiola. Manchester City have set a high bar over the last few seasons too, amassing 100 points and 98 points respectively as they won back-to-back league titles, breaking all manner of records in the process. This just goes to show what a powerhouse they are, but are Liverpool able to go all the way this year? It should be noted that Guardiola operates at a very high level of intensity. He has a ton of demands for his staff and the players have to live up to expectations that are, in some ways, hard to meet. That being said, he certainly knows what he is doing because City have been able to win five out of the last six trophies in domestic football. Sunday’s shock defeat to the Wolves and a recent loss at Norwich exposed a deficiency in the defence of Guardiola and this ultimately poked a hole in his game plan. Liverpool’s Chances are Even Better now the Defensive Duo are Out It should be noted that Guardiola is now without his first-choice defensive duo. These are none other than Aymeric Laporte and John Stones. This ultimately means that he is being forced to play a midfielder, Fernandinho, and Nicolas Otamendi. in the heart of his defence, and it’s safe to say that they are not doing much good for the team. Both of them had an afternoon that they’d probably like to forget against the Wolves. The fact that they could not sign a replacement for Vincent Kompany could be an issue. City also refused to hand over £80m for Harry Maguire too. They are showing vulnerabilities in their full-back roles and this is especially the case when you look at the left side. This has undermined their title defence and it has also allowed Liverpool to race into an 8-point lead. Of course, if you are a fan of Liverpool and their stunning performance, then you’ll be glad to know that it’s now easier than ever for you to play at Slots Of Vegas. There’s a Football Frenzy game that, if you’re a Liverpool fan, you won’t want to miss out on. Let’s Take a Look at Jurgen Klopp’s Side Jordan Klopp’s side is boasting a 100% record this season. They are also showing absolutely no signs of slowing down. The difference between Manchester City and Liverpool is that they are not giving up either. Even some of the players of Guardiola’s side are starting to lose their faith. City midfielder’s own Ilkay Gundogan has come out to say that it’s not easy to accept what is happening. After all, they are seeing their rivals come away with the level of success that they themselves should be experiencing. The player has also come out to say that they have dropped way too many points in the earlier part of the season and that the gap will get even bigger. This ultimately comes down to Manchester City trying to win as much as possible. If they don’t then they have no chances of overtaking Liverpool. The problem is that if they do come out with a win, they still need to count on Liverpool losing a few games or they may never be able to overtake them. Some have faith that they will be able to do this, but even then, the chances are slim. For this, history would have to repeat itself perfectly. Seeing Liverpool Win is A Bitter Taste for Manchester City Of course, there are still a lot of points to play for and it is early in the season still. If Manchester City want any hopes of even being in the title picture against Liverpool, then they need to bank on Liverpool dropping points. By the looks of things, that doesn’t look to be happening any time soon and this could cause major issues for the team and the players. A lot of the players at Manchester City are not happy at all but the only thing they can do is try and play better in the next game. They have too much to answer for but if they are able to learn from their mistakes and if they can push through then there is no reason why they might be able to claw back to some extent. They will need to fix the weak points that they have, and they will also need to work hard to show the other teams what they are made of. Guardiola has never lasted four years or more at any one of his clubs. When he worked with Barcelona, he chose to step down after four seasons. He stated that he was far too mentally exhausted to carry on. After taking a year-long leave, he then went to Bayern Munich for a total of three years. Right now, he’s in his fourth year with Manchester City. Does this mean he could be due to change things up? Is the pattern going to keep on repeating itself? Could this be Guardiola’s final season? Sure, he’s under contract until the year 2021 and he’s also insisted that he is going to see out the rest of the deal. By the looks of things, the pressure is taking its toll and there’s a possibility that even he won’t be able to handle the heat. He needs to bring his team back and he also needs to work hard if he wants to have any hopes of taking Manchester City to the finals.
  10. It is becoming much easier to find out the current today's football results, because all relevant information is presented on the website of sports statistics, where all the info is updated as quickly as possible. The new season began for Italian Roma not too successfully. This is not surprising, given the problems faced by the Wolves. A number of important players left the team this summer, including Nzonzi, El Shaarawy and Schick. There are some changes of coaches as well. The Romans are now led by Paulo Fonseca, previously known for working with Shakhtar Donetsk, but who didn’t have the experience of a mentor in top leagues. As a result, today’s football results weren’t the best in the starting tours. Of course, nothing bad happened, but the team that sets the task of getting into the top 4 of Serie A at the end of the season should act more actively and not lose points in meetings with less powerful opponents. It is possible that difficulties regarding the game will accompany Roma for a long time, because the team was active in the transfer market until the very last hours of its closure. Beginners will need some time to adapt, but the championship is already gaining momentum. Among the key acquisitions of the Wolves at the final stage of the transfer window, we can note the following players: Zappacosta; Smalling; Mkhitaryan. It is noteworthy that all 3 football players represented belong to English clubs and will play for the Romans on loan. Team success at Serie A In the end Roma managed to strengthen its position for a more successful performance in Serie A, but there are many questions regarding their transfers. Firstly, the newcomers didn’t undergo pre-season training with the team and joined basically during the season. This may affect their acclimatisation in the team. Secondly, all the football players on loan turned out to be unneeded for their English clubs, plus they are older players. Of course, Roma is a very good opportunity for them to revive their careers, but will they find enough motivation? The team has very big challenges for the current season in Serie A. And it’s a big question whether the team of Fonseca will be able to fulfil them at once. The Wolves look quite “heavy” at the start, although the situation can always change in their favour. In any case, there will be a busy and eventful season. Keeping track of all of them is easy on the website of sports statistics, which provides only reliable information about past and upcoming games of the team.
  11. Xherdan Shaqiri is not satisfied over his current playing status, but has no issue with manager Jurgen Klopp and believes he still has a big part to play as a senior member of the squad.In the main, Shaqiri has had a frustrating 2019, battling with niggling injuries and fierce competition for meaningful minutes.The Swiss international who is currently sidelined with a calf injury, has played a grand total of 29 minutes during this campaign, with 11 of those coming in the Community Shield against Man City.As someone who takes pride in his performance, Shaqiri is naturally frustrated.The Mirror (via Swiss publication Schweizer Illustrierte) reported Shaqiri as saying:“Of course I’m dissatisfied that I do not play more often.“If that is not the reaction of a pro, he’s in the wrong job. "He (Klopp) cannot personally discuss the role of each player, that’s normal.“We have a big, talented squad, and many have to wait for their chance. "I have never had a problem with the coach He knows that I am ready.“Not for a second have I regretted the move to Liverpool .The popular utility player talked about some of his personal highlights since making the move from Stoke.And how he believes his experience over many seasons can assist younger members of the squad. “Many wrote me off in Stoke, but who can claim to have switched directly from a relegated side to a Champions League winner?“I was in the starting XI in the return leg of the Champions League semi-final against Barcelona , which will go down in club history.“And because of my two goals to defeat everlasting rival Manchester United , they still often call me a legend.“Apart from the fact that I would like to play more, I’m happy in Liverpool. "I have a certain status in the team because I am one of the more experienced players. I think I’m one of the leaders."
  12. Jurgen Klopp has firmed in his view that player protection needs to be increased in the aftermath of Mo Salah sustaining a ankle injury in the Reds thrilling 2-1 win over Leicester on Saturday.The manager has never been someone to keep his views to himself in this regard and after seeing one of his key men severely hobbled after being hacked down by Hamza Choudhury in the closing stages of the tightly contested fixture he was understandably furious.Choudhury was only given a yellow card by Chris Kavanagh for the reckless challenge.In a big stroke of luck, early indications are that Salah could be fit for the Man United fixture after the international break, but that didn’t stop Klopp looking at the bigger picture of players welfare on the pitch. The Liverpool Echo reported the manager as saying:“ It was 1-1 and no-one wants to leave the pitch, so for Mo it was not possible to carry on."Sometimes I speak about a win and people think I am mad, but this kind of challenge to me – I don’t want to speak any more about the player – but this has to be a red card.“It is just too dangerous. There are more dangerous challenges, it is possible, but do you see more dangerous challenges than that? It is really rare.”Klopp is not one to see red cards brandished on a frequent basis but in his view there must be a line in the sand.“It's not that I want to see players sent off. “The best players are quick technicians and it should not be possible if you take them down this way you get a second chance. That’s it.“It is more a general thing than this. "It looked to me in the moment completely on purpose – he is away, stop the situation.”
  13. So I said last week that Everton would get something against City. Most of you thought I was mad but the truth is they almost did. At 1-1 they were giving as good as they got and Mina missed a couple of really good chances with free headers from corners. Then what happened? I’ll tell you what happened. Jordan fucking Pickford happened. One of the biggest mysteries in football is that no-one ever seems to talk about how shit this fella is. I feel like I’m on an island all by myself here. Every week I see the goals Everton are conceding, and every week I’m saying “Pickford was shite there”. Yet somehow he’s still got a good reputation and isn’t viewed as the absolute calamity that he is. Why is that? I can only assume it’s because in between the fuck ups he does make some brilliant saves and he’s got a sledgehammer left foot. He's like an Aldi version of Ederson only without the vomit inducing face and neck tattoos. The main reason he escapes scrutiny is because he plays for a team that literally nobody other their own fans gives a shit about. You can make mistake after mistake when playing for a non-entity like Everton, as it barely gets noticed, probably because they’re usually on last on MOTD when most people have gone to bed. He’s shit though, and City won this game because he let in a soft free-kick from Mahrez. If Everton had a half decent keeper then we’d have extended our lead at the top, but more importantly I’d have been able to lord it over all of you this week. Thanks ‘neighbours’. Thanks for nothing. Walcott started the game but went off after a few minutes when the ball hit him on the head and he went off on a stretcher. Bit a fanny isn’t he? Big Virg took one full in the face the other week and barely flinched, but Walcott gets one on the head from Sterling (who isn’t exactly known for power) and he ends up in fucking hospital. Most pointless player in the world. The Blues fell behind when they gave De Bruyne the freedom of Goodison to pick a cross. That only ever ends up in one outcome. Have they never seen hm play before? When he crosses it there’s virtually nothing you can do, so it’s probably not a good idea to give him ten yards of space on the right hand side to whip it across. Some things you can see even without a UEFA coaching licence. I almost switched off at that point as I thought Everton would collapse, but then Calvert-Lewin equalised when he stole a goal from Coleman. He headed it in from on the line and Coleman wasn’t amused. He was either pissed off at him nicking the goal, or (more likely) because he thought it was going to be ruled out by VAR. Calvert-Lewin did look offside initially and Coleman didn’t celebrate the goal because of that. Instead he said something to the young striker, probably along the lines of “if that gets disallowed coz of you being a greedy twat, I’ll fucking kill you”. At 1-1 it could have gone either way but Pickford’s failure to deal with a routine free-kick proved decisive. Even at 1-2 the Blues had their chances but they couldn’t take any of them and Sterling finished them off late on (again, look at the state of Pickford on that though). The two take aways i have from this are that Everton actually gave it a go against City and looked like they wanted to win. Even the crowd were up for it for once and I have no complaints on that front. I knew they’d have a go this time though, that’s why I tipped them to get something. They badly needed a result and on the balance of play they deserved one. They didn’t get it because their finishing wasn’t up to scratch and their keeper has arms like a toddler. The second take away is that City gave up eight shots on target, which is the most anyone had against them in four years. They’re vulnerable right now and I just hope someone can take advantage of that before they rectify the issues they’re having and go on one of those mad winning runs in the second half of the season. Sadly they’ve got Wolves this weekend, and they’ve been pure Zlatan so far this season so I’m not holding out any hope there. You never know though, I guess. This is just a teaser, click to view the full article Please note that PL Round Ups are only available to website subscribers. Subscriptions cost just £2 a month (you need to register first) and can be purchased here.
  14. Nabil Fekir has opened up about the transfer that wasn’t, believing that there were a number of lies told along the way.The French international was on the verge of a dream move to the Reds last summer, but with everything virtually signed,sealed and delivered the negotiations were suddenly ended due to Liverpool’s concerns over a long standing knee injury.However Fekir believes that it was a convenient excuse to not go through with the deal.Sky Sports (via L’Equipe) reported Fekir as saying:“ There was an incredible amount of lies told about it. “Everything that has been said about my family in particular. It hurts them, as it hurt me.“You want the truth? Even I do not know it, I assure you. “I did my medical examination and, behind, they decided not to sign me.“At one point, they wanted me to believe it was the knee. But it was an excuse and medical tests passed at Clairefontaine were very clear.“What irritated me was that by trying to advance this pseudo-physical problem, it ruled out chances with other clubs that were potentially interested, while there are other players who have experienced the same injury and it did not prevent them from returning to a normal trajectory. However Fekir who signed for Real Betis in the last transfer window does not hold it personally against the Reds.I have no bitterness towards Liverpool. “They showed me that they really wanted me. But behind, when you do not surround yourself with good people, it hurts you."However, Fekir’s former agent Jean-Pierre Bernes placed blame squarely at the feet of the former Lyon captain.“He has to stop this show and stop taking people for fools. Everyone knows what happened.“The transfer to Liverpool has turned around for two reasons. The first is his knee, even though the English club's leaders were willing to make an effort on this.“The second is the appearance of a foreign pseudo-representative who asked for the negotiations to be resumed from the beginning at the moment of signing.”All clubs have a player or two who have slipped through the net when everything seems on track.But despite being a good player, it seems entirely reasonable for the club to have pulled out of the Fekir deal if they detected a problem, as that is just good due diligence. View full article
  15. The new season has started in the top European championships, so following the soccer score becomes even more interesting. At the same time with this, the qualification tournament for Euro 2020 is ending, and in the last rounds many teams will compete for permit to the main continental forum of the four-year period. The team that definitely had no problems getting into the tournament was the French team. “Tricolor” passed the qualification stage very confidently and in almost every match were a cut above the opponent. This is not surprising, because the French are the reigning world champions. The next goal for them is a successful performance at the Euro itself. Looking at the latest soccer scores of Didier Deschamps’ team, this goal looks quite realistic. The strong points of the current world champions include: Great lineup. Now, the French have the strongest selection of performers in the world. Thanks to this, many stars are not included into the Didier Deschamps’ roster. The presence of a large number of cool performers allows him to carry out high-quality rotation and always find a place on the field only for the strongest. Great experience of performing at the highest level. All the players of the French national team are the leading players in their clubs, so they know how to play even in the most difficult situations. Motivation. Last time, the Euro was held in France. Then in the home arena, Deschamps’ players sadly lost to the Portuguese team in the finals. Despite the fact that after this the national team won the World Cup, the desire to triumph on the Euro remains. All this together makes the French one of the most obvious contenders for victory in Euro 2020, although the level of competition in the tournament promises to be very high, starting from the early stages. Latest changes in Algeria youth league On the sports statistics website, fans can always find news on the Algeria youth league. Here, many future stars take their first steps at the adult level. Algeria is rich in young talents, so even at a youth level it is quite interesting to follow their confrontations. This year the fight for the champion title promises to be especially intense and interesting. Fans will now be able to follow the development of events in real time. It is enough to visit the progressive resource to always learn more about the Algerian youth league and dozens of other competitions that take place in various parts of the world.
  16. Saturday Sep 28: Sheff Utd 0 L 1 Jeez that was hard going. If we’d taken our chances it would have been comfortable, but that was a really tough game and they’re a much better side than I thought they were. They shut down a lot of the space we like to play in and we never got going at all. We’ve got so much talent that we’ll create chances even when we’re not playing well and Mo and Sadio both missed sitters, but I’m willing to bet that at the end of the season when we look back at the toughest games we had, this will be top five. There might be games where we have worse results, but few will give us a more difficult game than these. Not that Chris Wilder was taking any comfort in that. I like him so far. I like how he doesn’t like being patted on the head and told how plucky his team are. He says he expects maximum effort and doesn’t give credit for it. He rightly said this was a missed opportunity as we had an off day and they could have taken advantage of it but didn’t because they missed chances and the keeper fucked up. In other news today, a complaint has been made about Hillsborough chants from Man United fans - at a women’s match. I’m not even surprised as for years I heard them doing it in reserve games. They’d turn up in their thousands just to sing about scouser, the fucking obsessed weirdos. Looks like this Nike thing is going to happen and we’ll be taking a lower up front payment because we get a share of the sales. Nike are going to use their big stars like LeBron James and Serena Williams to help promote us. Interesting. You know who else is a “Nike Athlete”? Mbappe. And you must have seen the video of Klopp with him and his Dad at the FIFA Awards last week. There was a familiarity there between Klopp and Mbappe’s Dad that immediately jumped out at me. You don’t greet someone you hardly know in that manner. Those two know each other, which points to talks having taken place at some point. I’ve already convinced myself he’ll be playing for us next season and Nike will be helping to finance it. Sunday Sep 29: We might be thrown out of the League Cup after fielding an ineligible player. Apparently Chirivela didn’t have international clearance. Not sure why he’d even need it seeing as how he’s been here forever, but the club reckon it’s the FA’s fault. Worst case scenario we get kicked out, best case we get away scot free and middle ground is a significant fine. I could be wrong, but I don’t see any way we get kicked out because who the hell wants to watch MK Dons v Arsenal in the next round? Money talks and the TV companies and sponsors will want us playing Arsenal. There is a precedent for this too, Sunderland were fined for doing something similar, so I’m not worried about this at all. Actually, if they did kick is out I wouldn’t be arsed, so that probably explains why I’m not worried. Meanwhile, last week I said I wondered what Sterling made of all this Bernardo stuff. Well now we know. Or at least we know what he has said publicly about it. I find it hard to believe he thinks this way privately: "It's a situation between two friends, Bernardo and Mendy, as everyone knows. I can see exactly the point where some people can get touchy-feely on it but I feel in that situation Bernardo made a joke to his friend". The whole ‘joke to his friend’ thing just doesn’t wash because he did it on social media for the world to see. Send him it via text and its a joke between two friends and the only thing that matters is what Mendy thinks of it. Posting it on twitter takes it into a whole different realm and it’s no longer just about Mendy. "I feel it's really sad to see someone like Bernardo, the whole week, be kind of down about it because he's not that way inclined. I keep going on about it, they're really good friends, it's really sad to see. He's not in the wrong for me but at the same time I can see where people think it's wrong and we just need to be smarter on social media. "We understand in this day and age anything you say and anything you do can quickly be judged and it's really just a sad situation in this moment in time. There's not one moment he uses a negative term to speak about his skin colour so that's the most important thing. He tried to make a joke and that joke wasn't the best, but we've got to move on and understand it was not intentional." All of that is spot on, but this part seems fucking mental to me: "He's not referred to his skin colour, he's not referred to his lips. In both the pictures they've both got small heads, you know. The most important thing for me is he didn't refer to a colour." He didn't refer to a colour!!! He didn't need to, the fucking cartoon did that for him. Jesus Christ. I wonder how Sterling would have felt if some randomer on twitter had sent him a message making a similar comparison? I get that he’s in a difficult spot here as it’s his team-mate who by all accounts is a nice fella liked by everyone. But fucking hell, ‘he’s not referred to skin colour or his lips’ is weak as fuck. This is just a teaser, click to view the full article Please note that the Week that Was is only available to website subscribers. Subscriptions cost just £2 a month (you need to register first) and can be purchased here.
  17. Jurgen Klopp has firmed in his view that player protection needs to be increased in the aftermath of Mo Salah sustaining a ankle injury in the Reds thrilling 2-1 win over Leicester on Saturday.The manager has never been someone to keep his views to himself in this regard and after seeing one of his key men severely hobbled after being hacked down by Hamza Choudhury in the closing stages of the tightly contested fixture he was understandably furious.Choudhury was only given a yellow card by Chris Kavanagh for the reckless challenge.In a big stroke of luck, early indications are that Salah could be fit for the Man United fixture after the international break, but that didn’t stop Klopp looking at the bigger picture of players welfare on the pitch. The Liverpool Echo reported the manager as saying:“ It was 1-1 and no-one wants to leave the pitch, so for Mo it was not possible to carry on."Sometimes I speak about a win and people think I am mad, but this kind of challenge to me – I don’t want to speak any more about the player – but this has to be a red card.“It is just too dangerous. There are more dangerous challenges, it is possible, but do you see more dangerous challenges than that? It is really rare.”Klopp is not one to see red cards brandished on a frequent basis but in his view there must be a line in the sand.“It's not that I want to see players sent off. “The best players are quick technicians and it should not be possible if you take them down this way you get a second chance. That’s it.“It is more a general thing than this. "It looked to me in the moment completely on purpose – he is away, stop the situation.” View full article
  18. Report by Dave Usher What is it with us and the Champions League Group Stages? Why do we make it so difficult for ourselves? This was ridiculous. We were 3-0 up and playing some spectacular football, and then suddenly in the blink of an eye it’s 3-3 and we’re having to go out and win the game all over again. Thankfully this team doesn’t panic and they know how to win tight games, but there are some things that need cleaning up because we’re not putting together 90 minute performances so far. We play in spells and those spells are usually enough because we’re so good. But in virtually every game we’re giving up clear chances. We’ve gotten away with it for the most part as until now no-one had been as clinical as Salzburg, but we don’t look as secure as we did this time last year. Salzburg are better than people realise though. They’re lively, they’ve got a positive way of playing and they’ve clearly got some good players. I thought we’d roll them over easily and for a while we did. At our best no-one can live with us and even when our level drops most still can’t compete. Salzburg did though. As soon as we took our foot off their throats, they came up swinging. I was really impressed with them but it’s beginning to feel like a recurring thing now. I've found myself praising our opponents quite a bit this season. Norwich, Chelsea, Sheffield United, Salzburg…. I’ve spoken about how well all of these played against us but now I’m wondering if it says more about us than them? I liked it better when we made good teams look bad. Now we’re making average teams look good. I do suspect that Salzburg are actually quite handy though, and I fancy them to turn Napoli over. Maybe they'll even qualify from the group. They certainly gave us all we could handle in that second half and they had their moments in the first half too. For half an hour though we were fucking brilliant. Some of the football was ridiculously good and two of the goals we scored were sublime. Salzburg got it wrong tactically and we made them pay. There was just so much space in wide areas that Mané, Trent and Robbo just ran riot in the opening half hour or so. Sadio looked in great nick. They couldn’t get near him early on. The opening goal looked so easy but it was brilliantly executed. The ease with which he went past two players, the timing of the run, the weight of return pass from Bobby, the finish… all just perfect. This is just a teaser, click to view the full article Please note that Match Reports are only available to website subscribers. Subscriptions cost just £2 a month (you need to register first) and can be purchased here.
  19. Whichever way you look at it, there’s no doubt that Liverpool have made a phenomenal start to the 2019-20 Premier League season. Although it’s still very early days, the Reds have taken maximum points from their opening seven games of the campaign, securing victories with the utmost efficiency, setting the pace at the top of the table. Some might claim that Liverpool haven’t been truly tested yet this term, aside from in Europe. Though at the same time, it’s also fair to say that in the Premier League there’s genuinely no such thing as an easy opponent. Sure, the 8-0 thrashing Manchester City handed Watford recently seemed easy enough for them, but prior to that, Guardiola’s side were held against Tottenham Hotspur and lost against newly promoted Norwich City. In the end, a win is still only worth three points regardless of the final score and while City have blown hot and cold when it comes to results, irrespective of how many goals they’ve managed to score in their opening seven encounters. Meanwhile, Liverpool have managed to achieve flawless winning consistency thus far, taking points in their threes on every occasion, which is what matters more than anything else. Last season, some will point to the 2-1 defeat at the Etihad against Manchester City as being a singular decisive result, one that handed City the Premier League title instead of Liverpool. However, that’s too simplistic a view to take. The Reds also drew seven other matches and had just one of those been a victory instead, the trophy would have been nestling in the Anfield silverware cabinet alongside the Champions League trophy. Reigning supreme as champions of Europe was certainly a brilliant consolation last season, but there’s a huge itch that Liverpool fans are eager to get itched once and for all. The Reds haven’t been champions of England since winning the old First Division back in the 1989-90 season, and they haven’t conquered England at all during the Premier League era, finishing runners-up four times and third on five occasions. Nearly is never good enough and it’s been a thorn in the side of Liverpool for far too long. The flying start made to the current season gives every sensation this could finally be our year. Though it’s perhaps still a little early to be polishing the shelf ready to receive the Premier League trophy, there’s nothing wrong with dreaming about the title coming to Anfield at long last. Given the quality of this side, the enthusiasm and managerial ability of Jurgen Klopp, the dream could soon come true.
  20. tlw content

    Opposition View: Leicester City

    Saturday sees the return of a familiar face to Anfield in former manager Brendan Rodgers. It will be the first time the Northern Irishman has faced the Reds since he was sacked in October 2015. The Foxes come to Anfield in impressive form sitting third in the table and with a real chance for a top four position come the end of the season Krystian Moson from @firstforlcfc discusses the emotional rollercoaster that the club has experienced over the past few years, the impact and confidence that Rodgers has instilled within the squad and some of the players that will be relishing the challenge of coming up against the ladder leaders. The last few years have been an incredible time in Leicester City’s history. There has been the incredible triumph with the title win, the sacking of a very popular manager combined with heartbreaking tragedy with the death of your club owner. As a supporter, can you sum up the rollercoaster of emotions you have felt during that time? It’s incredibly hard to sum up. The sheer extremes of emotions fans of Leicester City have experienced in recent years are so unique. Plenty of clubs stay under the radar consistently throughout their existence, and we were that club. But then out of nowhere things just went to an extreme with the title-winning season. Leicester City were suddenly a club recognised by people across the world. Of course, the turn of events that followed, with Claudio Ranieri departing the club and then the devastating loss of our beloved Chairman, Khun Vichai, provoked a whole different selection of emotions. But through thick and thin, our late Chairman’s legacy will forever live on and ultimately we are now a club heading in the direction he wanted us to, under the trustful ownership of his son, Top. Can you explain to our readers the impact that Brendan Rodgers has made on the Foxes since his appointment at the end of February? Brendan Rodgers replaced Claude Puel and there is a stark difference between the two managers. Ever since joining Rodgers has instilled positivity, belief and a hunger back in both the squad and the fans around Leicester City. The way in which he carries himself, speaks and ultimately sets his teams up has re-instilled belief in Foxes fans that we are on the up. The way in which we have started this season is certainly positive and we can only hope that with more time, will come greater success, and ultimately silverware under Rodgers. Liverpool fans know full well the attacking mindset that Brendan has as a manager. However it is fair to say that he neglected the defensive side of the game at times and that was to be his downfall at the club. Have you noticed a nice blend between defence and attack or is it still a work in progress? As things stand, both Leicester and Liverpool have the joint best defensive records in The Premier League this season (based on goals conceded). Whilst this is only a stat, it is fair to say that it does reflect an element of defensive stability Rodgers has instilled. We have two solid centre-backs in Jonny Evans and Çağlar Söyüncü, with width from Ricardo and Chilwell as attacking full-backs. Partnering this with defensive midfield cover in a player like Wilfred N’didi and/or Hamza Choudhury and I truly believe Rodgers has a system that does in fact balance defence and attack. Of course, this isn’t the finished product, but the development we have seen in N’didi alone, who used to purely renowned for his tackling ability, who is now a box-to-box engine suggests that Rodgers is working on something much bigger with this current crop of exciting players. It certainly can be claimed that one, and possibly two top-four spots are up for grabs this season. Do you believe that Rodgers has the kind of squad at his disposal that can stay the course during this campaign, or are there some areas that need reinforcing in January? In an article I contributed to pre-season, I boldly predicted Leicester would finish 4th. Right now, I would change that to 3rd when looking at the traditional ‘top 6’ all having issues on and off the pitch to contend with. We have no distractions. no European football., a squad that is content, a manager who is steering us in the right direction. Additions in January? A back-up to Jamie Vardy if you were to push me for an answer. Jamie isn’t getting younger and it could be argued that we don’t have a quality replacement in the squad. There has been a fair bit of change within your squad since the 2015/16 season. In your opinion, how important are the veterans like Wes Morgan, Jamie Vardy and Kasper Schmeichel in guiding the new boys and next generation of talent? I don’t think you can underestimate the influence our senior pros have amongst the current squad. Wes Morgan is now a squad player, but even then, his presence around the lads is likely to be massive. Both Kasper and Vardy are still massive players for us, and this is clear to see whenever they take to the field. With the loyalty these players have shown, rejecting moves to ‘bigger’ clubs we can only hope that it sets an example to players such as James Maddison (who is constantly being linked with a move away), that sometimes staying and growing into a key player can really reap rewards. Vardy has a terrific goalscoring record against the Reds, but who are some of the other players you believe can cause some problems for Liverpool on Saturday? Excluding Vardy, who I think will be relishing this trip, I’m going to focus on two key men who are influential. Maddison and Tielemans. When on-song, this duo have enough to slice through any team and I think that we are starting to see the best of both these players ahead of our trip to Anfield. If money was no object, which Liverpool player would you love to have in the Leicester line-up? Very good question, and not an easy one to answer. However, I think it would be extremely hard to ignore Mo Salah. Of course, players like Alisson, Van Dijk, Robertson, Alexander-Arnold, Mane and Firmino are all outstanding, but ever since Leicester sold Riyad Mahrez – we have lacked that magic man. It’s been evident since joining Liverpool that Salah has the skill to take a game to the opposition single-handedly, as well as produce moments of utter brilliance. This man would fit into any team in The Premier League, and he would be my choice for The Foxes. Even though he will not say it publicly, this game will mean an awful lot for Brendan. How do you believe he will set up and do you have a score prediction? How I believe he will set up and how I want him to set up are two different predictions! After our Newcastle victory I tweeted saying I’m going to call a 4-4 goal-fest at Anfield because I want us to go all-out-attack. Then look what happened midweek vs Salzburg… Admittedly, the chances of something like that happening twice in a week are slim, but never say never. Rationally thinking, I do think we are likely to set up closer to how we played Man Utd away, which ended in a lacklustre and uninspiring 1-0 loss that left plenty of fans frustrated. By this I’m predicting both Choudhury and N’didi start meaning a lot more defensive mindedness, with two players screening the back-four. Our game-plan would be realistically to grow into the game and grab a goal as we start to stamp our authority. Possession is a stat we have started to dominate under Rodgers’ and this could be one of the first games whereby we see less of the ball so it will be interesting to see if we try a few balls over-the-top for Vardy to latch onto as otherwise he can be very excluded (as per Man Utd). If we do set up like this, I have very optimistically gone with a 0-1 win for The Foxes. BUT, if we do see Maddison in that No.10 and only one holding midfielder, pencil me in for a 4-4!
  21. Saturday sees the return of a familiar face to Anfield in former manager Brendan Rodgers. It will be the first time the Northern Irishman has faced the Reds since he was sacked in October 2015. The Foxes come to Anfield in impressive form sitting third in the table and with a real chance for a top four position come the end of the season Krystian Moson from @firstforlcfc discusses the emotional rollercoaster that the club has experienced over the past few years, the impact and confidence that Rodgers has instilled within the squad and some of the players that will be relishing the challenge of coming up against the ladder leaders. The last few years have been an incredible time in Leicester City’s history. There has been the incredible triumph with the title win, the sacking of a very popular manager combined with heartbreaking tragedy with the death of your club owner. As a supporter, can you sum up the rollercoaster of emotions you have felt during that time? It’s incredibly hard to sum up. The sheer extremes of emotions fans of Leicester City have experienced in recent years are so unique. Plenty of clubs stay under the radar consistently throughout their existence, and we were that club. But then out of nowhere things just went to an extreme with the title-winning season. Leicester City were suddenly a club recognised by people across the world. Of course, the turn of events that followed, with Claudio Ranieri departing the club and then the devastating loss of our beloved Chairman, Khun Vichai, provoked a whole different selection of emotions. But through thick and thin, our late Chairman’s legacy will forever live on and ultimately we are now a club heading in the direction he wanted us to, under the trustful ownership of his son, Top. Can you explain to our readers the impact that Brendan Rodgers has made on the Foxes since his appointment at the end of February? Brendan Rodgers replaced Claude Puel and there is a stark difference between the two managers. Ever since joining Rodgers has instilled positivity, belief and a hunger back in both the squad and the fans around Leicester City. The way in which he carries himself, speaks and ultimately sets his teams up has re-instilled belief in Foxes fans that we are on the up. The way in which we have started this season is certainly positive and we can only hope that with more time, will come greater success, and ultimately silverware under Rodgers. Liverpool fans know full well the attacking mindset that Brendan has as a manager. However it is fair to say that he neglected the defensive side of the game at times and that was to be his downfall at the club. Have you noticed a nice blend between defence and attack or is it still a work in progress? As things stand, both Leicester and Liverpool have the joint best defensive records in The Premier League this season (based on goals conceded). Whilst this is only a stat, it is fair to say that it does reflect an element of defensive stability Rodgers has instilled. We have two solid centre-backs in Jonny Evans and Çağlar Söyüncü, with width from Ricardo and Chilwell as attacking full-backs. Partnering this with defensive midfield cover in a player like Wilfred N’didi and/or Hamza Choudhury and I truly believe Rodgers has a system that does in fact balance defence and attack. Of course, this isn’t the finished product, but the development we have seen in N’didi alone, who used to purely renowned for his tackling ability, who is now a box-to-box engine suggests that Rodgers is working on something much bigger with this current crop of exciting players. It certainly can be claimed that one, and possibly two top-four spots are up for grabs this season. Do you believe that Rodgers has the kind of squad at his disposal that can stay the course during this campaign, or are there some areas that need reinforcing in January? In an article I contributed to pre-season, I boldly predicted Leicester would finish 4th. Right now, I would change that to 3rd when looking at the traditional ‘top 6’ all having issues on and off the pitch to contend with. We have no distractions. no European football., a squad that is content, a manager who is steering us in the right direction. Additions in January? A back-up to Jamie Vardy if you were to push me for an answer. Jamie isn’t getting younger and it could be argued that we don’t have a quality replacement in the squad. There has been a fair bit of change within your squad since the 2015/16 season. In your opinion, how important are the veterans like Wes Morgan, Jamie Vardy and Kasper Schmeichel in guiding the new boys and next generation of talent? I don’t think you can underestimate the influence our senior pros have amongst the current squad. Wes Morgan is now a squad player, but even then, his presence around the lads is likely to be massive. Both Kasper and Vardy are still massive players for us, and this is clear to see whenever they take to the field. With the loyalty these players have shown, rejecting moves to ‘bigger’ clubs we can only hope that it sets an example to players such as James Maddison (who is constantly being linked with a move away), that sometimes staying and growing into a key player can really reap rewards. Vardy has a terrific goalscoring record against the Reds, but who are some of the other players you believe can cause some problems for Liverpool on Saturday? Excluding Vardy, who I think will be relishing this trip, I’m going to focus on two key men who are influential. Maddison and Tielemans. When on-song, this duo have enough to slice through any team and I think that we are starting to see the best of both these players ahead of our trip to Anfield. If money was no object, which Liverpool player would you love to have in the Leicester line-up? Very good question, and not an easy one to answer. However, I think it would be extremely hard to ignore Mo Salah. Of course, players like Alisson, Van Dijk, Robertson, Alexander-Arnold, Mane and Firmino are all outstanding, but ever since Leicester sold Riyad Mahrez – we have lacked that magic man. It’s been evident since joining Liverpool that Salah has the skill to take a game to the opposition single-handedly, as well as produce moments of utter brilliance. This man would fit into any team in The Premier League, and he would be my choice for The Foxes. Even though he will not say it publicly, this game will mean an awful lot for Brendan. How do you believe he will set up and do you have a score prediction? How I believe he will set up and how I want him to set up are two different predictions! After our Newcastle victory I tweeted saying I’m going to call a 4-4 goal-fest at Anfield because I want us to go all-out-attack. Then look what happened midweek vs Salzburg… Admittedly, the chances of something like that happening twice in a week are slim, but never say never. Rationally thinking, I do think we are likely to set up closer to how we played Man Utd away, which ended in a lacklustre and uninspiring 1-0 loss that left plenty of fans frustrated. By this I’m predicting both Choudhury and N’didi start meaning a lot more defensive mindedness, with two players screening the back-four. Our game-plan would be realistically to grow into the game and grab a goal as we start to stamp our authority. Possession is a stat we have started to dominate under Rodgers’ and this could be one of the first games whereby we see less of the ball so it will be interesting to see if we try a few balls over-the-top for Vardy to latch onto as otherwise he can be very excluded (as per Man Utd). If we do set up like this, I have very optimistically gone with a 0-1 win for The Foxes. BUT, if we do see Maddison in that No.10 and only one holding midfielder, pencil me in for a 4-4! View full article
  22. If you are a diehard Liverpool fan, you must have bet on the team a few times. Maybe you are thinking about placing your first bet, or you are a professional at it. Regardless, it is essential to choose a good betting site. That means you shouldn’t join bookie sites simply because they are popular. Even if a site works well for the masses, it might not be the best fit for you, so don’t blindly bet where everyone else bets. Instead, use the following criteria to find a bookie that fulfils all your expectations. #1: Choose a Local Bookmaker You might have seen an advert inviting you to bet on a foreign bookie not approved by the UKGC. Many of the companies are genuine but their lack of a license to operate in the UK should be a red flag. They may promise enormous bonuses and competitive odds, but you’ll get better services from UKGC bookies. For instance, you get an assurance your bookie can’t close down with your money. You also get a place to complain if you notice other anomalies from some betting sites. Betting companies operating in the UK without a UKGC license are illegal anyway, so using them will be going against the law. Scour the internet for several companies with Gambling Commission licenses and evaluate them for the following features. #2: Competitive Odds Betting companies are in the business of making money but so are you. Fine, you probably bet for fun and to earn beer money. But that doesn't mean you can't try and maximize your profits. Start the search for high-value odds with your favourite bookies. Move over to bookies you know but don't use anymore before checking out new casinos also. The idea is to conduct an exhaustive search for high-value odds no matter which UKGC bookie is offering them out. Of course, you must have a strategy of what wagers you want. If you love OVER/UNDER bets, examine bookies for these odds. If you prefer to place money line bets, dig around to find a few sites worth using. Read more here if you want to learn about all football wagers and how they work. #3: In-Play Betting In-play betting is the ''it thing' among football bettors. Put simply, in-play betting involves wagering on a team while a match is live. You can place your wager one minute after the game commences or in the 90th minute. As long as the game is still live, you can try your luck with a live bet. The best part about live betting is that you can watch a game while you also follow your bet. That means you can analyse it better and predict what is about to happen. If after fifteen minutes you think Sadio Mane will score before half time, you can go ahead and back them to score. Take notice, however, as in-play odds fluctuate fast. At the start of a match, the odds for Liverpool to beat Chelsea at the Kop could be 1.70. But should the reds score two goals within 30 minutes, you can be sure the odds will drop to 1.30 or worse. #4: Intuitive Website and Apps Competitive odds are great, but you also need a betting app or website that makes it easy to place bets. It should load fast, be easy to navigate, deposit, and withdraw money. That means you need to work with a bookie that has round the clock technical support for its website and app. Evaluating bookies' website is fortunately easy. All you need to do is to use a few sites at different times of the day. Place a wager during peak hours. If the website crashes or gets slow, you shouldn't rely on it for major bets. #5: Bonuses and Free Bets A free bet can serve many purposes besides helping maximise your profits. You can use it to place risky bets or test a new betting strategy. It can also help minimise your reliance on a bankroll. So, if you find a bookie that gives out bonuses regularly, claim them all. Unfortunately, many bookies are mean with bonuses. They might give you a welcome reward to celebrate your first bet with them. But after that, you’ll hardly receive any freebies. Don’t give up on finding football free bets, though. It might mean you create accounts on multiple betting websites. But if the effort rewards you with £200 worth of free bets, it will be worth it. #6: Quality Banking Services Although you want to find a bookmaker that supports your favourite payment options, ensure the bookie offers quick payments. It's one thing for a bookmaker to let you use PayPal for deposits and withdrawals. It's a new thing for the betting site to process your wins fast. Many betting websites accept all the popular e-wallets out there. They also allow credit cards and bank transfers. Choose betting companies that don’t charge you to deposit or withdraw money. Also, find out about the payment limits so that you are not restricted with unreasonably high minimum withdrawal limits. #7: Reliable Customer Support One sad fact every veteran betting fan can admit is that bookmakers struggle to provide reliable customer support. Even the best-rated bookies have accusations of ignoring customer queries. Remember, bookies are not to blame at times. Some people lose bets but still feel the need to complain. Others make mistakes while betting only to admonish betting websites. However, many companies willingly ignore customers' complaints. These are the bookies you should avoid. Read online reviews to learn about bookies’ reputations. You want to join a website where you feel valued and where your complaints are resolved quickly. To Conclude If you are thinking of finding a new bookie website, use the tips shared above to spot the right company. Don’t settle for the first bookmaker you come across. Try the services of a few companies and compare them. You’ll get to experience different services and decide which one suits your needs the best.
  23. Report by Dave Usher Phew. That's the main thing to say about this. Phew. It was a tough watch. We weren't ourselves and they were a right handful. Unexpected it may have been, but we won't have many tougher games this season. Thankfully we survived. During the course of a season you get performances like this. There’s no point trying to analyse the whys and wherefores about it. They just happen. To every team, no matter how good they are. You can go back through history and look at every great team that has ever played the game and you’ll find a performance or two like this in even their most successful seasons. It happens, you never know when it's going to happen and there’s nothing you can do to prevent it. When it does happen all you can do is make sure you somehow find a way to get through it. That's how successful teams achieve success. And we did get through it. It wasn’t pretty, it probably wasn’t deserved and you can argue it was somewhat fortunate given the nature of the winning goal. The counter point to that though is we missed three absolute sitters, which on another day we’d have converted and ran out comfortable winners. So yeah, we were lucky with the goal we scored, but Sheffield United were lucky with the ones we didn’t. That’s not taking anything away from how well they played though. Without wishing to sound patronising, I thought they were great. I was really impressed. They gave us as tough a game as we’ve had in the league since…. I dunno, probably since the Etihad last season. I mentioned last week how there are only a few games on the fixture list now that I look at and think “that’ll be tough”. Chelsea last week was one, Leicester away is another. A trip to Bramall Lane wasn’t supposed to be one of them, but you just never know. City wouldn't have been expecting to get done over by Norwich. As I say, it happens from time to time and when it does you need to be able to deal with it. It had that awkward feeling about this one from an early stage. The first ten minutes or so were ok but then you could tell we were toiling. It was slow, pedestrian, predictable, and fairly quickly you could see that the Blades were growing in confidence. The home fans were massively up for it, and although it’s difficult to know for sure when watching on the telly, from what I could tell this was the loudest opposition crowd we’ve played in front of in this country in a long time. It might just be the acoustics or where the microphones are, I don't know, but that sounded loud to me. They were hostile, which we always come up against as it goes with the territory when you’re good, but they were also hugely encouraging to their own team. The crowd were rabid (in a good way), and their performance was matched by their team who gave us all we could handle. Ok, we didn’t play well and on another day we’d probably batter them, but they’re clearly better than a lot of people realised (me included) and Chris Wilder has done an incredible job there. I’d be surprised if we came up against a more well drilled side all season. They defended brilliantly and denied us a lot of the space that we usually thrive in. You know they did this well because we barely even saw Bobby for most of the game and the full backs weren’t able to make their usual impact either. That took a lot of our threat away. Yet despite their brilliant defensive effort, they still managed to cause us several problems at the other end and could easily have scored two or three themselves. It’s one of those games where you know when you get to half time that you just want to get the win, go home and forget all about it. And that’s what we can do. I know it’s a cliché, but a year or two ago we’d have lost this game. Ok, I’ll rephrase that. Pre-Virgil we’d have lost this game. We’ve lost shitloads of games like this over the last decade, but since Van Dijk arrived that’s virtually stopped entirely. It’s not JUST him (Matip was brilliant again too), but he’s been the catalyst for it. This is just a teaser, click to view the full article Please note that Match Reports are only available to website subscribers. Subscriptions cost just £2 a month (you need to register first) and can be purchased here.
  24. Jurgen Klopp has downplayed the prospect of Liverpool breaking Man City’s all-time league record for consecutive victories.Currently, Liverpool sit two wins shy of City’s mark of 18 that they set in 2017/8.But the Reds have some substantial tests that they have to pass if they are to set a record of their own.Starting against Leicester on Saturday, the Reds then play Man United at Old Trafford and Tottenham at Anfield. It is for that reason that the German is not thinking too far ahead.The Echo reported Klopp as saying:“(There are) interesting games coming up. It doesn’t sound too likely. But we will try and first and foremost Salzburg and then Leicester. “Then it is the international break and hopefully everybody comes back healthy. That is most important.“Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah will play against each other in Singapore, very interesting game obviously, it’s not qualification for anything. “So hopefully everyone comes back healthy and then we try to prepare for Man United.Klopp says that records are nice to be a part of, but it is just a small piece of a much bigger picture.“I try to understand how other people think about things but from the way I think about things I’m not interested in the number to be honest. “It’s just a number. So, you only can create a streak like this if you’re always in the next job. “The next job is Salzburg which is a different competition and then Leicester City and that will be difficult." Having lost their opening group fixture away to Napoli the Reds need to get back on track with a win against Salzburg. Despite reaching successive finals in the competition and having made a 100% start to the Premier League campaign, Liverpool are only third favourites (behind Manchester City and Barcelona) to win what would be a seventh European Cup. If you fancy Klopp's side to retain their crown then check out the champions league betting with 888. After the outstanding success of last season, Klopp knows that Liverpool are the hunted in the mind of the opposition.Rather than playing it down, Klopp says his team must embrace this fact. “That’s what teams do anyway. And the next one is Salzburg and then Leicester in a very good moment, a very good team.“There’s always a story you can create. In our case, it’s always about how many games we’ve won. “Even if people don’t say it they think there will be a moment when you lose a game, or whatever.“When we play Salzburg or Leicester, people will talk about the last time we lost a competitive game at Anfield, but we don’t listen.”We try to make the best of the situation we are in. that’s how it is. Klopp pointed to the fact that while the build-up to the game might be fine, you have to take into equation what the opposition brings to the contest."Against Sheffield United, everything was fine. "We tried to use the week as well as we could to do the right things in training and still you face a team that is motivated to here, or higher. You saw that.“They really wanted to hurt us, in a football way. It was not a hard game. It was respectful. There were hard challenges but it was not a hard game."
  25. Jurgen Klopp has downplayed the prospect of Liverpool breaking Man City’s all-time league record for consecutive victories.Currently, Liverpool sit two wins shy of City’s mark of 18 that they set in 2017/8.But the Reds have some substantial tests that they have to pass if they are to set a record of their own.Starting against Leicester on Saturday, the Reds then play Man United at Old Trafford and Tottenham at Anfield. It is for that reason that the German is not thinking too far ahead.The Echo reported Klopp as saying:“ (There are) interesting games coming up. “It doesn’t sound too likely. But we will try and first and foremost Salzburg and then Leicester. “Then it is the international break and hopefully everybody comes back healthy. That is most important.“Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah will play against each other in Singapore, very interesting game obviously, it’s not qualification for anything. “So hopefully everyone comes back healthy and then we try to prepare for Man United.Klopp says that records are nice to be a part of, but it is just a small piece of a much bigger picture.“I try to understand how other people think about things but from the way I think about things I’m not interested in the number to be honest. “It’s just a number.“So, you only can create a streak like this if you’re always in the next job. “The next job is Salzburg which is a different competition and then Leicester City and that will be difficult.After the outstanding success of last season, Klopp knows that Liverpool are the hunted in the mind of the opposition.Rather than playing it down, Klopp says his team must embrace this fact. “That’s what teams do anyway. “And the next one is Salzburg and then Leicester in a very good moment, a very good team.“There’s always a story you can create. In our case, it’s always about how many games we’ve won. “Even if people don’t say it they think there will be a moment when you lose a game, or whatever.“When we play Salzburg or Leicester, people will talk about the last time we lost a competitive game at Anfield, but we don’t listen.”We try to make the best of the situation we are in. that’s how it is. Klopp pointed to the fact that while the build-up to the game might be fine, you have to take into equation what the opposition brings to the contest."Against Sheffield United, everything was fine. "We tried to use the week as well as we could to do the right things in training and still you face a team that is motivated to here, or higher. You saw that.“They really wanted to hurt us, in a football way. It was not a hard game. It was respectful. There were hard challenges but it was not a hard game." View full article
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