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TLW

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  1. If Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is hoping for a fresh start away from Liverpool this summer then that could now be in doubt with the club reportedly weighing up what valuation they put on the midfielder. The 28 year-old is coming out of contract at the end of next season and with the likes of Mo Salah and Sadio Mane in the same boat, it seems unlikely that his re-signing shapes as a priority. Additionally to that point is that Oxlade-Chamberlain would be fully aware of the logjam for places in the Liverpool midfield and would be closely assessing what his next step would be. After making 43 appearances and scoring eight goals in all competitions during the 2019-20 campaign, in the last two seasons combined he has made just 46 appearances despite being fully fit for the last 18 months. His last appearance this season came in the FA Cup quarter-final clash against Nottingham Forest and despite Jurgen Klopp making a number of changes for the midweek clash against Southampton, Oxlade remained on the bench. ESPN reports that Liverpool are prepared to listen to offers for Oxlade-Chamberlain this summer but the club will assess how much interest there is in him before setting a valuation on him. Oxlade-Chamberlain came to the club in the summer of 2017 from Arsenal for £35 million but it his highly unlikely that the club get close to that figure. And the club have shown in recent years that they are not afraid to hold on to players for their final year if they do not get the valuation they are after with some examples being Gini Wijnaldum and Adam Lallana. In a position such as what Oxlade-Chamberlain faces, you weigh up the balance between professional ambition and being part of a successful squad. Some like Divock Origi have been more than happy to put his own career progression to one side and become the perfect role player for the big moments, but others like Wijnaldum decide to leave despite being a first team regular. So while there is a chance that Ox may have to see out his final year at the club, he would have to admit that there are far worse places to be. View full article
  2. If Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is hoping for a fresh start away from Liverpool this summer then that could now be in doubt with the club reportedly weighing up what valuation they put on the midfielder. The 28 year-old is coming out of contract at the end of next season and with the likes of Mo Salah and Sadio Mane in the same boat, it seems unlikely that his re-signing shapes as a priority. Additionally to that point is that Oxlade-Chamberlain would be fully aware of the logjam for places in the Liverpool midfield and would be closely assessing what his next step would be. After making 43 appearances and scoring eight goals in all competitions during the 2019-20 campaign, in the last two seasons combined he has made just 46 appearances despite being fully fit for the last 18 months. His last appearance this season came in the FA Cup quarter-final clash against Nottingham Forest and despite Jurgen Klopp making a number of changes for the midweek clash against Southampton, Oxlade remained on the bench. ESPN reports that Liverpool are prepared to listen to offers for Oxlade-Chamberlain this summer but the club will assess how much interest there is in him before setting a valuation on him. Oxlade-Chamberlain came to the club in the summer of 2017 from Arsenal for £35 million but it his highly unlikely that the club get close to that figure. And the club have shown in recent years that they are not afraid to hold on to players for their final year if they do not get the valuation they are after with some examples being Gini Wijnaldum and Adam Lallana. In a position such as what Oxlade-Chamberlain faces, you weigh up the balance between professional ambition and being part of a successful squad. Some like Divock Origi have been more than happy to put his own career progression to one side and become the perfect role player for the big moments, but others like Wijnaldum decide to leave despite being a first team regular. So while there is a chance that Ox may have to see out his final year at the club, he would have to admit that there are far worse places to be.
  3. Adam Lallana has sent a message of support to Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain with the midfielder on the outside looking in as the season of Liverpool reaches a thrilling conclusion. Jurgen Klopp shuffled his pack against Southampton on Tuesday night due to the intense schedule and gave opportunities to the likes of Harvey Elliott, Takumi Minamino and Kostas Tsimikas while Curtis Jones had his first 90-minute outing in the league since playing against Crystal Palace in late January. One player who has also been on the periphery of late but was not called upon despite being one of the substitutes on the evening was Oxlade-Chamberlain. It has been a common theme for the former Arsenal and Southampton player as his last appearance for the Reds came two months ago against Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup quarter-final clash with his last league outing coming against Norwich in the middle of February. Klopp has often bemoaned the lack of the five-substitute rule in the Premier League which would allow him to give more minutes to fringe players. The other opportunity for those kind of players comes through injury to regular first teamers, but Liverpool have had very few absentees in the second half of the season and the ones that have missed games have returned in a short period. Klopp was apologetic to his squad players after the 2-1 win on the South Coast. “Harvey, not sure when he last played. Curtis, no rhythm. Takumi Minamino, it’s a crime he’s not playing more often. Oxlade didn’t even play and he’s in outstanding shape. “It’s really tough for the boys but whatever happens this year, happened because of this group. It’s exceptional, and tonight they showed that again.” This is the time of the season that any player lives for, when there are cups and titles on the line. But when you are on the outside looking in, it would test even those with the strongest resolve. Lallana was part of the Champions League and title winning squads, but only played minor roles in both successes, and he therefore saw the need to look to greener pastures for his own career. As the Express reported, the veteran spoke about the difficulty of the situation that Oxlade would be in at this point of time and the ability of striking the right balance on a team and individual scale. “It has been a tough few months for Chambo. Not being involved. I have been there myself. It’s hard to manage your own ego at times because you want to be playing. You feel sorry for yourself. “At times, you do have to act. When you are down, you have to put a brave face on to support your teammates. And you can be proud of doing that. “Come the end of the season, he has contributed. When the lads were at AFCON’s in January, he put in some unbelievable performances. He scored some important goals, so he has contributed massively. It was great to see him on the bench and celebrate with his players (on Tuesday.) There is little doubt that Ox is a player that splits opinion in the fanbase, much in the way that Lallana did. But losing a year out of your career when you are in your prime is a crippling blow for any player and you have to be made of strong character to bounce back. That is exactly what the midfielder has done, and in truth while he has not approached those levels of individual brilliance that he displayed in the second half of the 2017/2018 season, he has certainly played his part in this golden era of Liverpool. And if Ox does move on in the off-season, there will be plenty of goodwill towards him
  4. Adam Lallana has sent a message of support to Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain with the midfielder on the outside looking in as the season of Liverpool reaches a thrilling conclusion. Jurgen Klopp shuffled his pack against Southampton on Tuesday night due to the intense schedule and gave opportunities to the likes of Harvey Elliott, Takumi Minamino and Kostas Tsimikas while Curtis Jones had his first 90-minute outing in the league since playing against Crystal Palace in late January. One player who has also been on the periphery of late but was not called upon despite being one of the substitutes on the evening was Oxlade-Chamberlain. It has been a common theme for the former Arsenal and Southampton player as his last appearance for the Reds came two months ago against Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup quarter-final clash with his last league outing coming against Norwich in the middle of February. Klopp has often bemoaned the lack of the five-substitute rule in the Premier League which would allow him to give more minutes to fringe players. The other opportunity for those kind of players comes through injury to regular first teamers, but Liverpool have had very few absentees in the second half of the season and the ones that have missed games have returned in a short period. Klopp was apologetic to his squad players after the 2-1 win on the South Coast. “Harvey, not sure when he last played. Curtis, no rhythm. Takumi Minamino, it’s a crime he’s not playing more often. Oxlade didn’t even play and he’s in outstanding shape. “It’s really tough for the boys but whatever happens this year, happened because of this group. It’s exceptional, and tonight they showed that again.” This is the time of the season that any player lives for, when there are cups and titles on the line. But when you are on the outside looking in, it would test even those with the strongest resolve. Lallana was part of the Champions League and title winning squads, but only played minor roles in both successes, and he therefore saw the need to look to greener pastures for his own career. As the Express reported, the veteran spoke about the difficulty of the situation that Oxlade would be in at this point of time and the ability of striking the right balance on a team and individual scale. “It has been a tough few months for Chambo. Not being involved. I have been there myself. It’s hard to manage your own ego at times because you want to be playing. You feel sorry for yourself. “At times, you do have to act. When you are down, you have to put a brave face on to support your teammates. And you can be proud of doing that. “Come the end of the season, he has contributed. When the lads were at AFCON’s in January, he put in some unbelievable performances. He scored some important goals, so he has contributed massively. It was great to see him on the bench and celebrate with his players (on Tuesday.) There is little doubt that Ox is a player that splits opinion in the fanbase, much in the way that Lallana did. But losing a year out of your career when you are in your prime is a crippling blow for any player and you have to be made of strong character to bounce back. That is exactly what the midfielder has done, and in truth while he has not approached those levels of individual brilliance that he displayed in the second half of the 2017/2018 season, he has certainly played his part in this golden era of Liverpool. And if Ox does move on in the off-season, there will be plenty of goodwill towards him View full article
  5. Harvey Elliott has admitted that his inability to get first team minutes under his belt after recovering from a long term injury is down to him. On Tuesday night, the 19 year-old midfielder made his first league start since that fateful day at Elland Road in mid September where he suffered a fracture dislocation of his left ankle following a challenge from Leeds defender Pascal Struijk. While the injury was undoubtedly a serious one, what was more cruel was the timing,as Elliott who had returned to the club full of confidence after a stellar campaign on loan at Blackburn, had made a strong start to the new season with the Leeds fixture his third consecutive league start. As a Footballer you have plenty of ups and downs and it is how you respond to the setbacks which ultimately decides your career path. Speaking to the Echo after playing an hour in the win on the South Coast, Elliott admitted that he needs to be at his very best physically to be in the plans of the manager. “I know myself that I am fit but it's down to the manager to make the decisions. We're all 100% behind his decisions and we all take it on the chin. So I haven't been playing that much but it's been all down to me really. “There have been some training weeks where I haven't really been at my best and it's down to me to make sure that I am showing the gaffer that I am able to play and I am ready for the opportunity like today when it is given to me. "But like I say, we're all committed and we're all 100% behind the gaffer. So whatever team is put out or whatever subs come on, it's best for us and best for the team, so we're all for it as a team.” After a physically and emotionally sapping FA Cup victory over Chelsea last Saturday, Jurgen Klopp shuffled his pack, giving stars such as Trent Alexander-Arnold, Andy Robertson and Luis Diaz the night off, while Mo Salah and Virgil Van Dijk sat out with minor injuries. It was a calculated risk but it gave a real sense of responsibility to the likes of Kostas Tsimikas, Takumi Minamino and Harvey Elliott to help keep the title hopes alive. And Elliott said he relished the opportunity to play his part. “We've got a great squad with great players and to get out there and start again is a lovely feeling, just to put the Liverpool shirt back on and play 60 minutes. Hopefully I can get more minutes down the line, but we'll see. I am just ready for each and every moment. I've just got to keep myself fit." With Man City dropping points to West Ham last Sunday, the margin of error in their last game of the season has narrowed substantially ,thanks largely to the pure persistence and consistency of Liverpool during the second half of the season. But as the squad often discussed when facing a similar scenario at the tail end of the 2018/9 campaign, Elliott said the the focus is not what their rivals do, but more so taking care of their own business first and foremost. “I think it's exactly that. We just need to make sure we get the three points and focus on us all really. Whatever happens will happen and obviously we need to make sure we do our job and worry about other results after. "We're not focusing elsewhere, it's all on ourselves, making sure that if we play our own game to get the points and show the fans our appreciation towards them. Hopefully they can cheer us on in the next game and we just need to keep it tight, focus and make sure we get the job done."
  6. Harvey Elliott has admitted that his inability to get first team minutes under his belt after recovering from a long term injury is down to him. On Tuesday night, the 19 year-old midfielder made his first league start since that fateful day at Elland Road in mid September where he suffered a fracture dislocation of his left ankle following a challenge from Leeds defender Pascal Struijk. While the injury was undoubtedly a serious one, what was more cruel was the timing,as Elliott who had returned to the club full of confidence after a stellar campaign on loan at Blackburn, had made a strong start to the new season with the Leeds fixture his third consecutive league start. As a Footballer you have plenty of ups and downs and it is how you respond to the setbacks which ultimately decides your career path. Speaking to the Echo after playing an hour in the win on the South Coast, Elliott admitted that he needs to be at his very best physically to be in the plans of the manager. “I know myself that I am fit but it's down to the manager to make the decisions. We're all 100% behind his decisions and we all take it on the chin. So I haven't been playing that much but it's been all down to me really. “There have been some training weeks where I haven't really been at my best and it's down to me to make sure that I am showing the gaffer that I am able to play and I am ready for the opportunity like today when it is given to me. "But like I say, we're all committed and we're all 100% behind the gaffer. So whatever team is put out or whatever subs come on, it's best for us and best for the team, so we're all for it as a team.” After a physically and emotionally sapping FA Cup victory over Chelsea last Saturday, Jurgen Klopp shuffled his pack, giving stars such as Trent Alexander-Arnold, Andy Robertson and Luis Diaz the night off, while Mo Salah and Virgil Van Dijk sat out with minor injuries. It was a calculated risk but it gave a real sense of responsibility to the likes of Kostas Tsimikas, Takumi Minamino and Harvey Elliott to help keep the title hopes alive. And Elliott said he relished the opportunity to play his part. “We've got a great squad with great players and to get out there and start again is a lovely feeling, just to put the Liverpool shirt back on and play 60 minutes. Hopefully I can get more minutes down the line, but we'll see. I am just ready for each and every moment. I've just got to keep myself fit." With Man City dropping points to West Ham last Sunday, the margin of error in their last game of the season has narrowed substantially ,thanks largely to the pure persistence and consistency of Liverpool during the second half of the season. But as the squad often discussed when facing a similar scenario at the tail end of the 2018/9 campaign, Elliott said the the focus is not what their rivals do, but more so taking care of their own business first and foremost. “I think it's exactly that. We just need to make sure we get the three points and focus on us all really. Whatever happens will happen and obviously we need to make sure we do our job and worry about other results after. "We're not focusing elsewhere, it's all on ourselves, making sure that if we play our own game to get the points and show the fans our appreciation towards them. Hopefully they can cheer us on in the next game and we just need to keep it tight, focus and make sure we get the job done." View full article
  7. A delighted Jurgen Klopp has praised the impact of squad members who have been lacking first team opportunities in recent months as the Reds defeated Southampton 2-1, and take their quest to win the Premier League into the final day of the season. After a gruelling and emotionally sapping 120 minutes plus penalties in their FA Cup triumph against Chelsea , the Liverpool manager made the understandable decision to rotate his squad with another major fixture looming on the horizon in Paris on Saturday week. Klopp has been realistic in his responses when asked if his team can take the League trophy out the hands of Man City and echoed that line after this triumph saying "It is possible, not likely but possible. That is enough." However in typical Klopp fashion he wanted to look at the bigger picture and in this case it was the contribution of the likes of Taki Minamino, Curtis Jones and Harvey Elliott that delighted him. Elliott made his first league appearance since February (against Leicester) and first start since his season was disrupted by a serious ankle injury against Leeds in September. It has also been three months since Minamino last made a league appearance (vs Norwich) and he celebrated his first league start of the season with his 10th goal in all competitions. Speaking after the win, Klopp started with a sincere apology as the Echo reported: “It’s a crime! I apologise! Crazy! People ask me if it’s hard to pick a line-up,” “Takumi Minamino, it’s a crime he’s not playing more often." In a sign of a strong squad, Klopp had no qualms in his squad rotation and saw it as another indication that the whole squad can step up to the mark when called upon to do so. “I love it! I have options. Today we could have lined up differently, but we really liked it. “Making nine changes, if it wouldn’t have worked out it would have been 1000 percent my responsibility,” he said. “Now it is 1000 percent the boys’ responsibility. “The football we could play was really good. It’s hard [to leave people out]. I expect them to react like they do, but it’s not normal. It’s special. Whatever happens, happens because the group is pretty, pretty special. “Actually, I’m so happy about the performance, it was a bit touching to be honest. It was like ‘Wow, these boys!’ It’s like having Ferraris in the garage and then you let them out and they play like this. “Harvey, not sure when he last played. Curtis, no rhythm. Oxlade didn’t even play and he’s in outstanding shape. Klopp was just as thrilled with the reaction to conceding a early goal, one that he believes should not have stood. “I can ask for a lot but the boys have to do it. They did it exceptionally well. Some incredible performances tonight. I saw a group reacting to a blow. I didn’t see the situation [Redmond goal] back but I thought it was a clear foul, there could have been nerves but the boys on the pitch, not all. We just kept going. “We controlled the game, we know how Southampton wants to play, and we played in all the spaces where they couldn’t get us. “Last 10 minutes, this group didn’t play together 500 times so you could see now the changes. We have to work on how we can play time down without getting in trouble. But in the end, Ali was there and we deserve the three points. Fantastic.” View full article
  8. A delighted Jurgen Klopp has praised the impact of squad members who have been lacking first team opportunities in recent months as the Reds defeated Southampton 2-1, and take their quest to win the Premier League into the final day of the season. After a gruelling and emotionally sapping 120 minutes plus penalties in their FA Cup triumph against Chelsea , the Liverpool manager made the understandable decision to rotate his squad with another major fixture looming on the horizon in Paris on Saturday week. Klopp has been realistic in his responses when asked if his team can take the League trophy out the hands of Man City and echoed that line after this triumph saying "It is possible, not likely but possible. That is enough." However in typical Klopp fashion he wanted to look at the bigger picture and in this case it was the contribution of the likes of Taki Minamino, Curtis Jones and Harvey Elliott that delighted him. Elliott made his first league appearance since February (against Leicester) and first start since his season was disrupted by a serious ankle injury against Leeds in September. It has also been three months since Minamino last made a league appearance (vs Norwich) and he celebrated his first league start of the season with his 10th goal in all competitions. Speaking after the win, Klopp started with a sincere apology as the Echo reported: “It’s a crime! I apologise! Crazy! People ask me if it’s hard to pick a line-up,” “Takumi Minamino, it’s a crime he’s not playing more often." In a sign of a strong squad, Klopp had no qualms in his squad rotation and saw it as another indication that the whole squad can step up to the mark when called upon to do so. “I love it! I have options. Today we could have lined up differently, but we really liked it. “Making nine changes, if it wouldn’t have worked out it would have been 1000 percent my responsibility,” he said. “Now it is 1000 percent the boys’ responsibility. “The football we could play was really good. It’s hard [to leave people out]. I expect them to react like they do, but it’s not normal. It’s special. Whatever happens, happens because the group is pretty, pretty special. “Actually, I’m so happy about the performance, it was a bit touching to be honest. It was like ‘Wow, these boys!’ It’s like having Ferraris in the garage and then you let them out and they play like this. “Harvey, not sure when he last played. Curtis, no rhythm. Oxlade didn’t even play and he’s in outstanding shape. Klopp was just as thrilled with the reaction to conceding a early goal, one that he believes should not have stood. “I can ask for a lot but the boys have to do it. They did it exceptionally well. Some incredible performances tonight. I saw a group reacting to a blow. I didn’t see the situation [Redmond goal] back but I thought it was a clear foul, there could have been nerves but the boys on the pitch, not all. We just kept going. “We controlled the game, we know how Southampton wants to play, and we played in all the spaces where they couldn’t get us. “Last 10 minutes, this group didn’t play together 500 times so you could see now the changes. We have to work on how we can play time down without getting in trouble. But in the end, Ali was there and we deserve the three points. Fantastic.”
  9. James Milner has experienced the full gamut of emotions throughout his playing career spanning the best part of two decades however he has not lost any of his competitive edge. Rewind to the very start of Milner’s career and just like Trent Alexander-Arnold he was living the dream of every talented young Footballer in playing for their boyhood club in the Premier League. But while the full-back has steadily ticked off a number of honours both on a team and personal level, Milner was in a team that was in a fair bit of trouble both on the pitch and in a financial sense. Eventually and inevitably relegation came for a Leeds team which at one stage had neutrals captivated with their rise and young talent at their disposal, but the end came just as spectacularly leading to a fire sale of their finest assets including Milner. The life of a Footballer is often shown to be one of flash houses, fancy cars, fashionable events, glamorous partners and the list goes on. The stories of their exploits attract the headlines and clicks, but what is often forgotten are the grafters, the ones willing to do the hard yards away from the bright lights to achieve their main goal. Personal success didn’t come easy for Milner who spent a number of seasons at Newcastle and Aston Villa before joining the cashed-up version of Man City where the silverware flowed. But despite that, Milner wasn’t satisfied, he wanted to be part of a new project where he could pass on his years of knowledge to. That club was Liverpool. Now 36 and having won the full slate of honours, one of the most astute thinkers in the game today reflected on that time as he told The Independent. “When I went to City they hadn’t won anything for a long time and it was great to be part of that, the start of their success, winning leagues and cups. Liverpool is an incredible club with incredible history, but it hadn’t been as successful [in the recent past], hadn’t won the Premier League, which was baffling. “That was the aim, and if we could do that, win a Premier League here, that would be special. It’s a process, and the process has been incredible.” Having ridden the rollercoaster of highs and lows throughout the years more than most, the veteran is in a perfect position to speak to the stars of the present (and future) and advise them to enjoy this moment but not to take it for granted. “ I said to Trent, ‘your cabinet is pretty full, but don’t get bored of it. “What an incredible player he is, but he’s lucky that he’s come into a team that is so good. He deserves it because of how good a player he is, but you never know when things are going to change, so you have to enjoy it while it’s here.” Despite seeing it all throughout his playing career, Milner still is as passionate as he was when making a debut for Leeds as a 16 year-old 20 years ago. And he still loves the elements that makes the game great, such as the unbridled joy of fans when victory is achieved. The midfielder explained why he didn’t see the decisive penalty in the shootout on Saturday. “I wanted to watch our fans’ reaction. “I had faith in Kostas, I know he’s got a wand of a left foot. Obviously you’re nervous, because you know there’s a good chance it could be over, but how many times do you get to play at Wembley and experience that? It was amazing. You see everyone experiencing what you’re feeling yourself; relief, joy, everything.” Professional to the very end, the tee-total explained he celebrated the victory with “ a Coke – “full-fat, because Diet Coke is worse for you,” And while he knows he is coming to the end of a illustrious career, his hunger for success shows no signs of slowing. “You’re very lucky to play in any final, you’re lucky to be a footballer in the first place, and to play in finals and win 10 medals,”“If you said that at the start of my career, I’d have taken it. “But 10 could become 12 on successive weekends. Each seems to mean more. “Yeah, it does, because you don’t know how long is left, do you?” View full article
  10. James Milner has experienced the full gamut of emotions throughout his playing career spanning the best part of two decades however he has not lost any of his competitive edge. Rewind to the very start of Milner’s career and just like Trent Alexander-Arnold he was living the dream of every talented young Footballer in playing for their boyhood club in the Premier League. But while the full-back has steadily ticked off a number of honours both on a team and personal level, Milner was in a team that was in a fair bit of trouble both on the pitch and in a financial sense. Eventually and inevitably relegation came for a Leeds team which at one stage had neutrals captivated with their rise and young talent at their disposal, but the end came just as spectacularly leading to a fire sale of their finest assets including Milner. The life of a Footballer is often shown to be one of flash houses, fancy cars, fashionable events, glamorous partners and the list goes on. The stories of their exploits attract the headlines and clicks, but what is often forgotten are the grafters, the ones willing to do the hard yards away from the bright lights to achieve their main goal. Personal success didn’t come easy for Milner who spent a number of seasons at Newcastle and Aston Villa before joining the cashed-up version of Man City where the silverware flowed. But despite that, Milner wasn’t satisfied, he wanted to be part of a new project where he could pass on his years of knowledge to. That club was Liverpool. Now 36 and having won the full slate of honours, one of the most astute thinkers in the game today reflected on that time as he told The Independent. “When I went to City they hadn’t won anything for a long time and it was great to be part of that, the start of their success, winning leagues and cups. Liverpool is an incredible club with incredible history, but it hadn’t been as successful [in the recent past], hadn’t won the Premier League, which was baffling. “That was the aim, and if we could do that, win a Premier League here, that would be special. It’s a process, and the process has been incredible.” Having ridden the rollercoaster of highs and lows throughout the years more than most, the veteran is in a perfect position to speak to the stars of the present (and future) and advise them to enjoy this moment but not to take it for granted. “ I said to Trent, ‘your cabinet is pretty full, but don’t get bored of it. “What an incredible player he is, but he’s lucky that he’s come into a team that is so good. He deserves it because of how good a player he is, but you never know when things are going to change, so you have to enjoy it while it’s here.” Despite seeing it all throughout his playing career, Milner still is as passionate as he was when making a debut for Leeds as a 16 year-old 20 years ago. And he still loves the elements that makes the game great, such as the unbridled joy of fans when victory is achieved. The midfielder explained why he didn’t see the decisive penalty in the shootout on Saturday. “I wanted to watch our fans’ reaction. “I had faith in Kostas, I know he’s got a wand of a left foot. Obviously you’re nervous, because you know there’s a good chance it could be over, but how many times do you get to play at Wembley and experience that? It was amazing. You see everyone experiencing what you’re feeling yourself; relief, joy, everything.” Professional to the very end, the tee-total explained he celebrated the victory with “ a Coke – “full-fat, because Diet Coke is worse for you,” And while he knows he is coming to the end of a illustrious career, his hunger for success shows no signs of slowing. “You’re very lucky to play in any final, you’re lucky to be a footballer in the first place, and to play in finals and win 10 medals,”“If you said that at the start of my career, I’d have taken it. “But 10 could become 12 on successive weekends. Each seems to mean more. “Yeah, it does, because you don’t know how long is left, do you?”
  11. The discussion over the greatest Liverpool manager is always a fascinating one with a range of opinions depending on the era that you grew up in. The work by the managers that made this club one of the greatest in club Football such as Bill Shankly, Bob Paisley and Kenny Dalglish are etched in history forever more. Modern day Liverpool fans will unquestionably say that they have never had it so good than at this point of time and the one man who has been the architect of everything that is great with the club is Jurgen Klopp. On the weekend, the FA Cup became the latest honour that the German has won with the club making it six in all and moving him alongside the late Gerard Houllier on the Liverpool managerial honour board. In doing so, he became just the second manager after Alex Ferguson to win the full set of honours in England (League/Champions League/FA and League Cup) as well as being the first German manager to win the FA Cup. In terms of pure numbers, Paisley sits head and shoulders in top position with 20, Shankly (11) and Dalglish (9). All three of those iconic figures won multiple league titles and in doing so got the opportunity to play in the Charity/Community Shield where they combined to win it on 13 occasions. It is debatable to say where the competition rates in the modern era, especially with the Football calendar compressed like never before and some clubs largely seeing the fixture as a glorified friendly. But still it counts as silverware and for only the second time in his tenure, Klopp will get to add to his Liverpool honours when he takes on Man City in early August. The only other time was when Arsenal defeated the Reds at a fan-free Wembley 5-4 on penalties (1-1 in normal time) in 2020. Klopp is someone who has immersed himself in club history and culture and when asked where his side should be placed, as usual was ever the diplomat as the Mirror reported. “If you think 20 years ahead and look back, it's really special. Jordan Henderson will probably be a pundit or something. But he will be the first - hopefully not the last - to win all four trophies, or however many it is. "We don't finish, I can't say where this team ranks and I know a few players of these teams but I cannot say how they played but I'm pretty sure they were the best at the time. "But meanwhile, we know so much more about training, so much more about sports science and all these kind of things and that's why these boys are so much fitter than the previous teams. It's nothing to do with football talent or whatever. “If the players like Rushie or Kenny had been able to train like today, that would have been crazy. We don't stop here, we just take the time to enjoy it (even) for a few minutes.” Jurgen has the opportunity to add one and possibly two more honours to his name before this season is out, but the fact that this topic is openly discussed is just a measure of the man and this squad in general. And they are not finished yet. View full article
  12. The discussion over the greatest Liverpool manager is always a fascinating one with a range of opinions depending on the era that you grew up in. The work by the managers that made this club one of the greatest in club Football such as Bill Shankly, Bob Paisley and Kenny Dalglish are etched in history forever more. Modern day Liverpool fans will unquestionably say that they have never had it so good than at this point of time and the one man who has been the architect of everything that is great with the club is Jurgen Klopp. On the weekend, the FA Cup became the latest honour that the German has won with the club making it six in all and moving him alongside the late Gerard Houllier on the Liverpool managerial honour board. In doing so, he became just the second manager after Alex Ferguson to win the full set of honours in England (League/Champions League/FA and League Cup) as well as being the first German manager to win the FA Cup. In terms of pure numbers, Paisley sits head and shoulders in top position with 20, Shankly (11) and Dalglish (9). All three of those iconic figures won multiple league titles and in doing so got the opportunity to play in the Charity/Community Shield where they combined to win it on 13 occasions. It is debatable to say where the competition rates in the modern era, especially with the Football calendar compressed like never before and some clubs largely seeing the fixture as a glorified friendly. But still it counts as silverware and for only the second time in his tenure, Klopp will get to add to his Liverpool honours when he takes on Man City in early August. The only other time was when Arsenal defeated the Reds at a fan-free Wembley 5-4 on penalties (1-1 in normal time) in 2020. Klopp is someone who has immersed himself in club history and culture and when asked where his side should be placed, as usual was ever the diplomat as the Mirror reported. “If you think 20 years ahead and look back, it's really special. Jordan Henderson will probably be a pundit or something. But he will be the first - hopefully not the last - to win all four trophies, or however many it is. "We don't finish, I can't say where this team ranks and I know a few players of these teams but I cannot say how they played but I'm pretty sure they were the best at the time. "But meanwhile, we know so much more about training, so much more about sports science and all these kind of things and that's why these boys are so much fitter than the previous teams. It's nothing to do with football talent or whatever. “If the players like Rushie or Kenny had been able to train like today, that would have been crazy. We don't stop here, we just take the time to enjoy it (even) for a few minutes.” Jurgen has the opportunity to add one and possibly two more honours to his name before this season is out, but the fact that this topic is openly discussed is just a measure of the man and this squad in general. And they are not finished yet.
  13. Timo Werner says that Jurgen Klopp is someone that relates to everyone and that is what makes him different from a lot of other individuals in Football. Werner crossed paths with Klopp when he was just making his way in German Football and over the seasons he became one of the most potent strikers in the Bundesliga which paved the way for him to move to the Premier League. Speaking ahead of the showcase FA Cup final at Wembley this afternoon, it is clear that the 25 year-old has a large deal of respect for his countryman. Metro (via Evening Standard) reported Werner as saying: “He is one of the best coaches we had in Germany,’ ‘Not to attack our manager, but over the past years he won the most titles. He has a very nice personality – a personality that the German people love, because he seems like fun. “The Germans love the types like Thomas Muller, Jurgen Klopp – they have empathy. They say what they think, and that is really important in this business, to not fake something. “He’s real. He is a funny guy and also, with his power on the sideline, he tries to bring the people with him. That’s what we Germans like.’ In the aftermath of a drought breaking title win, there was great speculation at the that Klopp would bring Werner to Liverpool that would have added more quality to already potent frontline. However, the striker who came very close to playing under Klopp at Dortmund chose to go to West London instead and said that he has no regrets. “When I was in Leipzig, I had the possibility to come to the Premier League. Liverpool were also in my thoughts and were a big possibility for me, but at the end I decided for Chelsea and I won the Champions League title last year. It was not the worst decision." To this point of time Werner has scored 23 in 89 games for Chelsea, including just 10 in 56 Premier League appearances. So while Werner says he does not regret his decision it could be said that Liverpool do not regret with going through with the transfer, especially when you compare the impact of Diogo Jota who arrived at the Reds in that same window.
  14. Timo Werner says that Jurgen Klopp is someone that relates to everyone and that is what makes him different from a lot of other individuals in Football. Werner crossed paths with Klopp when he was just making his way in German Football and over the seasons he became one of the most potent strikers in the Bundesliga which paved the way for him to move to the Premier League. Speaking ahead of the showcase FA Cup final at Wembley this afternoon, it is clear that the 25 year-old has a large deal of respect for his countryman. Metro (via Evening Standard) reported Werner as saying: “He is one of the best coaches we had in Germany,’ ‘Not to attack our manager, but over the past years he won the most titles. He has a very nice personality – a personality that the German people love, because he seems like fun. “The Germans love the types like Thomas Muller, Jurgen Klopp – they have empathy. They say what they think, and that is really important in this business, to not fake something. “He’s real. He is a funny guy and also, with his power on the sideline, he tries to bring the people with him. That’s what we Germans like.’ In the aftermath of a drought breaking title win, there was great speculation at the that Klopp would bring Werner to Liverpool that would have added more quality to already potent frontline. However, the striker who came very close to playing under Klopp at Dortmund chose to go to West London instead and said that he has no regrets. “When I was in Leipzig, I had the possibility to come to the Premier League. Liverpool were also in my thoughts and were a big possibility for me, but at the end I decided for Chelsea and I won the Champions League title last year. It was not the worst decision." To this point of time Werner has scored 23 in 89 games for Chelsea, including just 10 in 56 Premier League appearances. So while Werner says he does not regret his decision it could be said that Liverpool do not regret with going through with the transfer, especially when you compare the impact of Diogo Jota who arrived at the Reds in that same window. View full article
  15. Thiago Alcantara has put his own personal disappointment on missing one of the showcase events on the domestic calendar in context. On the verge of kick-off for the Carabao Cup, there was raw emotion kickoff by the Spanish international when he had to pull out of the contest after suffering a hamstring injury. After a difficult first season for the club, the injuries (and illness) had continued into the new campaign.But after returning from a nagging hip injury in early February, the 31 year-old had finally had put some momentum together with his quality clear for everyone to see. Alcantara has played on much larger stages that a League Cup final, but while personally shattered in the moment of his injury, what instantly came into the mind of 31 year-old was the hardship that fans had been through during the pandemic which saw them missing out on seeing their team play for over a season. Jurgen Klopp has often touched on the trials and tribulations of everyday life in relation to Football during these times, and Alcantara has the same kind of thought processes as he explained to the Official Site. “It came to my mind that the last season was very hard for myself to try to be here and not having the fans in the stadium, not having this fun that this sport gives to you. “Lifting a trophy is a special moment but it was more for the frustrating situation that everybody had the last few years. It was because of what we have been through and was a kind of celebration of overcoming that situation." The veteran midfielder said one of the main things about missing a final is not to make it all about you despite how naturally disappointing it would be. “We fought a lot to arrive in that moment, that you can play in a final, and then suddenly because I had a bad thing, a bad neck problem and it caused just like a chain of movement that in the end caused me an injury in the hammy. “It's a moment where you are just frustrated. You just calm down a bit, you try to be cold enough to face the final. It was as it was. "We won it and, for sure, it's bittersweet that you don't play that game, but you're happy for the team.” Barring any late hitches, tomorrow afternoon will see Thiago walk out for his first Cup final for the club and being a connoisseur of the game, knows what the FA Cup means. “We came from other countries – not just me but other players – and just met this amazing competition, the oldest in the world. We are really excited to play – not just the competition itself but a final. We're ready for it. "It doesn't matter if we didn't win [it] before or for a long time. It's just about a trophy that we can win and we add in our backpack this new challenge. We're looking forward to it. Wembley is an amazing stadium. It's special itself but then you know that Wembley is used for special moments. There's different context and we're ready to go to London." Despite losing touch with the top two in the league and going through a considerable did of form, no one associated with Liverpool will underestimate the size of the challenge against Chelsea, who have not given a inch in their three meetings this season. “It's a new game and we will prepare it as it must be prepared, nothing else. "[We] understand that we are playing against one of the best teams in the world and we know it will be tight, we know it's always difficult. "They want to take something that we want to take as well. It's a continuous fight with this kind of team. The best team will win."
  16. Thiago Alcantara has put his own personal disappointment on missing one of the showcase events on the domestic calendar in context. On the verge of kick-off for the Carabao Cup, there was raw emotion kickoff by the Spanish international when he had to pull out of the contest after suffering a hamstring injury. After a difficult first season for the club, the injuries (and illness) had continued into the new campaign.But after returning from a nagging hip injury in early February, the 31 year-old had finally had put some momentum together with his quality clear for everyone to see. Alcantara has played on much larger stages that a League Cup final, but while personally shattered in the moment of his injury, what instantly came into the mind of 31 year-old was the hardship that fans had been through during the pandemic which saw them missing out on seeing their team play for over a season. Jurgen Klopp has often touched on the trials and tribulations of everyday life in relation to Football during these times, and Alcantara has the same kind of thought processes as he explained to the Official Site. “It came to my mind that the last season was very hard for myself to try to be here and not having the fans in the stadium, not having this fun that this sport gives to you. “Lifting a trophy is a special moment but it was more for the frustrating situation that everybody had the last few years. It was because of what we have been through and was a kind of celebration of overcoming that situation." The veteran midfielder said one of the main things about missing a final is not to make it all about you despite how naturally disappointing it would be. “We fought a lot to arrive in that moment, that you can play in a final, and then suddenly because I had a bad thing, a bad neck problem and it caused just like a chain of movement that in the end caused me an injury in the hammy. “It's a moment where you are just frustrated. You just calm down a bit, you try to be cold enough to face the final. It was as it was. "We won it and, for sure, it's bittersweet that you don't play that game, but you're happy for the team.” Barring any late hitches, tomorrow afternoon will see Thiago walk out for his first Cup final for the club and being a connoisseur of the game, knows what the FA Cup means. “We came from other countries – not just me but other players – and just met this amazing competition, the oldest in the world. We are really excited to play – not just the competition itself but a final. We're ready for it. "It doesn't matter if we didn't win [it] before or for a long time. It's just about a trophy that we can win and we add in our backpack this new challenge. We're looking forward to it. Wembley is an amazing stadium. It's special itself but then you know that Wembley is used for special moments. There's different context and we're ready to go to London." Despite losing touch with the top two in the league and going through a considerable did of form, no one associated with Liverpool will underestimate the size of the challenge against Chelsea, who have not given a inch in their three meetings this season. “It's a new game and we will prepare it as it must be prepared, nothing else. "[We] understand that we are playing against one of the best teams in the world and we know it will be tight, we know it's always difficult. "They want to take something that we want to take as well. It's a continuous fight with this kind of team. The best team will win." View full article
  17. Jamie Carragher has paid tribute to the consistency and overall quality of Sadio Mane after the Senegalese superstar proved to be the match winner in Liverpool’s vital 2-1 win over Aston Villa on Tuesday evening. Despite missing the large majority of January due to taking part and leading his country to their first African Cup of Nations triumph, the 30 year-old has scored 13 goals in this calendar year and for this whole campaign has scored 22 goals including 15 in the league. In a era where the individual is often feated for their exploits on the pitch, Mane displays a incredible amount of selflessness more than happy to play his role and in turn see the team get the rewards. As someone who has being around the game for a great period of time first as a player and now a pundit, Carragher puts the career of Mane on a pedestal as he told Sky Sports. “Sadio Mane is my favourite player, There is just something about Mane. He's sacrificed himself at times and the shift he puts in. “He, along with Salah, has been doing that for five years - they are never injured! They are there week in, week out for 90 minutes, getting the numbers up there every week. What they have done for this football club is unbelievable. “I love him, absolutely love him to bits. And not just because he's a great player and what he's done for Liverpool. Carragher also highlighted the adaptability of Mane to play across the front line. “He initially came in on the right wing then moved to the left when Salah arrived. Diaz comes in on the left and Mane goes to centre-forward. "He's always moving for someone else but his performances never drop. It doesn't seem to matter where Mane plays, you get exactly the same from him, the same cannot be said for the rest of the Liverpool attack." While the future of Salah is often a discussion point, Mane is also out of contract come the end of next season and despite a link with Bayern Munich coming to light this week, he is not even thinking of what might happen in the future, in his thoughts is purely about the team. “I think I just try to enjoy every moment and try to score and assist for my teammates. I think it is all about the team or nothing, the boys make it easier for me so I am obviously very happy.” And you get a sense that Jurgen Klopp will not even contemplate life at Liverpool without one of his main men. “He's a machine, I told him after the (Villa) game,"[He's a] massive player, his physicality is brutal. The mix of technique, desire and physicality. You can see [he has] a few yards in the legs, we can see it to be honest. He's a fantastic, world-class player.”
  18. Jamie Carragher has paid tribute to the consistency and overall quality of Sadio Mane after the Senegalese superstar proved to be the match winner in Liverpool’s vital 2-1 win over Aston Villa on Tuesday evening. Despite missing the large majority of January due to taking part and leading his country to their first African Cup of Nations triumph, the 30 year-old has scored 13 goals in this calendar year and for this whole campaign has scored 22 goals including 15 in the league. In a era where the individual is often feated for their exploits on the pitch, Mane displays a incredible amount of selflessness more than happy to play his role and in turn see the team get the rewards. As someone who has being around the game for a great period of time first as a player and now a pundit, Carragher puts the career of Mane on a pedestal as he told Sky Sports. “Sadio Mane is my favourite player, There is just something about Mane. He's sacrificed himself at times and the shift he puts in. “He, along with Salah, has been doing that for five years - they are never injured! They are there week in, week out for 90 minutes, getting the numbers up there every week. What they have done for this football club is unbelievable. “I love him, absolutely love him to bits. And not just because he's a great player and what he's done for Liverpool. Carragher also highlighted the adaptability of Mane to play across the front line. “He initially came in on the right wing then moved to the left when Salah arrived. Diaz comes in on the left and Mane goes to centre-forward. "He's always moving for someone else but his performances never drop. It doesn't seem to matter where Mane plays, you get exactly the same from him, the same cannot be said for the rest of the Liverpool attack." While the future of Salah is often a discussion point, Mane is also out of contract come the end of next season and despite a link with Bayern Munich coming to light this week, he is not even thinking of what might happen in the future, in his thoughts is purely about the team. “I think I just try to enjoy every moment and try to score and assist for my teammates. I think it is all about the team or nothing, the boys make it easier for me so I am obviously very happy.” And you get a sense that Jurgen Klopp will not even contemplate life at Liverpool without one of his main men. “He's a machine, I told him after the (Villa) game,"[He's a] massive player, his physicality is brutal. The mix of technique, desire and physicality. You can see [he has] a few yards in the legs, we can see it to be honest. He's a fantastic, world-class player.” View full article
  19. Jurgen Klopp says the extreme emotions after the game lead managers to say things that perhaps they would not in normal circumstances. After Man City’s thumping 5-0 victory over Newcastle on Sunday which gave the defending champions a major boost to their title defence after crumbling in the final stages of their Champions League semi final tie against Real Madrid, Pep Guardiola went off on a tangent that can only be described as a bit odd. “Everyone in this country supports Liverpool, the media and everyone. ‘Of course because Liverpool has an incredible history behind them, in European competitions. Not in the Premier League, because they’ve won one in 30 years.” Despite the intense and captivating rivalry of the two clubs in this era, the public dialogue from both Klopp and Guardiola have been nothing but respectful, complementary and very rarely gone off script. Speaking ahead of the Reds midweek trip to take on Aston Villa (per Metro), Klopp explained what goes through the mind of a manager after a frenetic 90 minutes of action and did not take those comments by Guardiola to heart saying that he too has been at fault in this sense. “As manager, and I had this experience recently after a game (Tottenham), we are massively influenced by the game, the situation, I said - would I say it again, no - after the game 'they play like they play and are still only fifth'. It was just my feeling in that moment and I couldn't respect Antonio (Conte) more and what he's doing. “But after a game like that… I don’t know exactly what kind of situation Pep was in, but after getting knocked out of the Champions League, that’s already difficult enough to take, but then of course Liverpool made it to the final.” As for the statement that the “whole country” is behind Liverpool to win the title, Klopp was more than a little sceptical. "I have no idea if the whole country is supporting us, it's not the feeling I get when we go to places, it's actually the opposite. Maybe he knows more about that than me. “I live in Liverpool so, yes, here a lot of people want us to win the league, that's true, but even here it's probably only 50 per cent.” Despite the blow to their title chances on the weekend, in normal Klopp fashion he is maintaining a positive outlook. “It's clear it is not over because we both have three games to play and my concern is how can we win our games. We have absolutely no hand in how City play their games but before they are played, we should not add on points. “We don't do that and I'm pretty sure City is not doing that. [Until] it's not reachable anymore, why should we stop believing?" View full article
  20. Jurgen Klopp says the extreme emotions after the game lead managers to say things that perhaps they would not in normal circumstances. After Man City’s thumping 5-0 victory over Newcastle on Sunday which gave the defending champions a major boost to their title defence after crumbling in the final stages of their Champions League semi final tie against Real Madrid, Pep Guardiola went off on a tangent that can only be described as a bit odd. “Everyone in this country supports Liverpool, the media and everyone. ‘Of course because Liverpool has an incredible history behind them, in European competitions. Not in the Premier League, because they’ve won one in 30 years.” Despite the intense and captivating rivalry of the two clubs in this era, the public dialogue from both Klopp and Guardiola have been nothing but respectful, complementary and very rarely gone off script. Speaking ahead of the Reds midweek trip to take on Aston Villa (per Metro), Klopp explained what goes through the mind of a manager after a frenetic 90 minutes of action and did not take those comments by Guardiola to heart saying that he too has been at fault in this sense. “As manager, and I had this experience recently after a game (Tottenham), we are massively influenced by the game, the situation, I said - would I say it again, no - after the game 'they play like they play and are still only fifth'. It was just my feeling in that moment and I couldn't respect Antonio (Conte) more and what he's doing. “But after a game like that… I don’t know exactly what kind of situation Pep was in, but after getting knocked out of the Champions League, that’s already difficult enough to take, but then of course Liverpool made it to the final.” As for the statement that the “whole country” is behind Liverpool to win the title, Klopp was more than a little sceptical. "I have no idea if the whole country is supporting us, it's not the feeling I get when we go to places, it's actually the opposite. Maybe he knows more about that than me. “I live in Liverpool so, yes, here a lot of people want us to win the league, that's true, but even here it's probably only 50 per cent.” Despite the blow to their title chances on the weekend, in normal Klopp fashion he is maintaining a positive outlook. “It's clear it is not over because we both have three games to play and my concern is how can we win our games. We have absolutely no hand in how City play their games but before they are played, we should not add on points. “We don't do that and I'm pretty sure City is not doing that. [Until] it's not reachable anymore, why should we stop believing?"
  21. Jurgen Klopp has looked to rally his squad after a 1-1 draw against Tottenham that has put a dent in their title hopes. The fixture against the North London outfit always looked to be the most difficult in the title run-in and so it proved as Antonio Conte’s team proved a very resolute outfit and took the lead through Son-Heung-Min before the ever-lively Luis Diaz equalised with a deflected strike 16 minutes from time. As ever, the Reds kept pressing for the winner which would have piled on the pressure on City ahead of their fixture today, but try as they may it wasn’t to be. It is a remarkable stat of how good Liverpool have had to be to keep pace with City, the dropped points was only the third time they have done so in 16 league games in this calendar year. Speaking after the encounter (per the Official site), Klopp said that the disappointment was evident within the playing group but emphasised that one point could come in very handy. “It is an important point because we have one point more than before the game, so that's how it is. But we all know the situation. We are now top of the table. If you ask me, my favourite situation, it just stays like this with the same points tally, and City and us, we lose all the rest of the games in the Premier League and it stays like this. “That would be great, but we all know it will not happen. So in this moment, we are disappointed. The boys are more disappointed than I am – it might be because of my age, because I saw pretty much everything already in my life. “But we will go again. There were so many good things tonight in a situation like that. The counter-press we played today, you can record it and sell this stuff, it's unbelievable. “I am so proud of that but, in the end, how I said, in the little moments, a little bit better decision-making... it's easy for me to say because I don't run and I didn't run four days ago, but we all know the boys are able to do that and then we could have won. ‘But, of course, we know we could've lost as well because they are obviously insane in their counter-attacking. That's what they want to do. I saw a lot of the things we want to do but not the result we wished for." Klopp knows as much as anyone how important keeping your focus is at this stage of the season, and therefore was not interested in what City do in their next game, more so how his own players put this setback in the back of their minds with Villa quickly on the horizon. And in usual fashion the manager wanted to put a positive spin on life in general. “Look, I would love to sit here and say, 'Yes, City will drop points.' The only problem is I can't see it. This is the problem. I would wish I would think differently about it, it's just I can't see it. “My problem in the moment is not how City smashes Newcastle tomorrow. My problem is that we play on Tuesday against Aston Villa. “We will try to prepare as good as possible – as we always do – and try to be ready for Aston Villa. Villa Park, oh my God, that will be tough as well, but we will give it a try. “So the boys are absolutely in the mood they should be now – very disappointed. That's fine. But from tomorrow on, I heard the spring is coming to England, so maybe we can use the weather a little bit for being in a good mood and we will try." View full article
  22. Jurgen Klopp has looked to rally his squad after a 1-1 draw against Tottenham that has put a dent in their title hopes. The fixture against the North London outfit always looked to be the most difficult in the title run-in and so it proved as Antonio Conte’s team proved a very resolute outfit and took the lead through Son-Heung-Min before the ever-lively Luis Diaz equalised with a deflected strike 16 minutes from time. As ever, the Reds kept pressing for the winner which would have piled on the pressure on City ahead of their fixture today, but try as they may it wasn’t to be. It is a remarkable stat of how good Liverpool have had to be to keep pace with City, the dropped points was only the third time they have done so in 16 league games in this calendar year. Speaking after the encounter (per the Official site), Klopp said that the disappointment was evident within the playing group but emphasised that one point could come in very handy. “It is an important point because we have one point more than before the game, so that's how it is. But we all know the situation. We are now top of the table. If you ask me, my favourite situation, it just stays like this with the same points tally, and City and us, we lose all the rest of the games in the Premier League and it stays like this. “That would be great, but we all know it will not happen. So in this moment, we are disappointed. The boys are more disappointed than I am – it might be because of my age, because I saw pretty much everything already in my life. “But we will go again. There were so many good things tonight in a situation like that. The counter-press we played today, you can record it and sell this stuff, it's unbelievable. “I am so proud of that but, in the end, how I said, in the little moments, a little bit better decision-making... it's easy for me to say because I don't run and I didn't run four days ago, but we all know the boys are able to do that and then we could have won. ‘But, of course, we know we could've lost as well because they are obviously insane in their counter-attacking. That's what they want to do. I saw a lot of the things we want to do but not the result we wished for." Klopp knows as much as anyone how important keeping your focus is at this stage of the season, and therefore was not interested in what City do in their next game, more so how his own players put this setback in the back of their minds with Villa quickly on the horizon. And in usual fashion the manager wanted to put a positive spin on life in general. “Look, I would love to sit here and say, 'Yes, City will drop points.' The only problem is I can't see it. This is the problem. I would wish I would think differently about it, it's just I can't see it. “My problem in the moment is not how City smashes Newcastle tomorrow. My problem is that we play on Tuesday against Aston Villa. “We will try to prepare as good as possible – as we always do – and try to be ready for Aston Villa. Villa Park, oh my God, that will be tough as well, but we will give it a try. “So the boys are absolutely in the mood they should be now – very disappointed. That's fine. But from tomorrow on, I heard the spring is coming to England, so maybe we can use the weather a little bit for being in a good mood and we will try."
  23. Mo Salah says has made no apologies for publicly saying that he wanted to play Real Madrid as the Reds look to erase bitter memories in their quest for their seventh European Cup. The Spanish outfit came from the absolute clouds to crush the hearts and minds of Man City at the Bernabeu on Wednesday evening in a comeback that will rank very highly in their illustrious 120-year history. While there are those in the Football media and casual fans who get all misty eyed and patriotic by the thought of two English clubs fighting for the most prestigious trophy in club football, the reality is very different. By and large due to familiarity reasons when two clubs from the same country meet in this showcase fixture, it never lives up to expectations. The main essence of the competition is to challenge yourself against the best of what the continent has to offer. And come the 28th of this month in Paris that is exactly what will happen when the Reds take on the most successful club in the history of this competition. One of those 13 triumphs by Real came against Liverpool in 2018 when they emerged 3-1 winners. It was a bitter end to a terrific European campaign for the Reds and especially for Salah who had enjoyed a record breaking first season at the club, but played no more than 30 minutes after injuring his shoulder in a highly cynical challenge by Sergio Ramos. In the aftermath of Real’s dramatic win against City, Salah who is not known for being provocative on or off the pitch tweeted “ we have a score to settle.” It was exactly what fans have said for years and only emphasised after Madrid knocked the Reds out of the competition at the Quarter-final stage last season, albeit Liverpool missing a number of their key stars and their legion of fans at Anfield due to Covid restrictions. And there is little doubt that it has been in the back of the mind of the players and coaches, and speaking to Sky Sports, the newly crowned Football Writer Association Player of the Year said that he was only being honest. “I don't know why we're not allowed to talk about it but I'm ok to talk about it - I wanted that game! I wanted to play Real Madrid before that game [against Manchester City]. “Of course, I'm not giving too much credit to them. They're an unbelievable team with a great coach, great players. When they asked me who I wanted, I said Madrid. It's an easy answer." Salah reflected on the 2018 heartbreak and said while the initial disappointment was raw, he knew that the team had to quickly put it behind them. “You just feel so disappointed, so down," Salah recalled about the Kyiv disappointment. "'Ah come on, not in this game!' But once you have time, it makes you forget. "I had work affairs and then I had a holiday after. In that holiday I just asked - what do you want? To keep crying about it and be sad about it and it takes you down? Or you just fight back. And I fought back in the best way and that's why we're here now. “We had a meeting after and the manager talked to us in pre-season. We were so hungry to win the Champions League the year after and in the Premier League we were very close as well. I think it had some benefits also, not everything was good losing that final but we had benefits." Salah may have scored more goals in his debut season (44), but he is unequivocal that this campaign is his best for the club due to the fact that his all-round game is much better. “This is my best season for me at Liverpool. The goal and assist numbers are high and the way I created chances, the highest number in the Premier League, everything around the game has changed a lot. "I don't feel that good when the team loses games, or when I don't score or make a difference. But when the team wins and I don't score, I'm still very happy. "I just try to find the small things to fire me up. I try to look at a small record there, or another record there to keep my mind busy. I try to be driven with these records to break them, I try to be hungry for something new." View full article
  24. Mo Salah says has made no apologies for publicly saying that he wanted to play Real Madrid as the Reds look to erase bitter memories in their quest for their seventh European Cup. The Spanish outfit came from the absolute clouds to crush the hearts and minds of Man City at the Bernabeu on Wednesday evening in a comeback that will rank very highly in their illustrious 120-year history. While there are those in the Football media and casual fans who get all misty eyed and patriotic by the thought of two English clubs fighting for the most prestigious trophy in club football, the reality is very different. By and large due to familiarity reasons when two clubs from the same country meet in this showcase fixture, it never lives up to expectations. The main essence of the competition is to challenge yourself against the best of what the continent has to offer. And come the 28th of this month in Paris that is exactly what will happen when the Reds take on the most successful club in the history of this competition. One of those 13 triumphs by Real came against Liverpool in 2018 when they emerged 3-1 winners. It was a bitter end to a terrific European campaign for the Reds and especially for Salah who had enjoyed a record breaking first season at the club, but played no more than 30 minutes after injuring his shoulder in a highly cynical challenge by Sergio Ramos. In the aftermath of Real’s dramatic win against City, Salah who is not known for being provocative on or off the pitch tweeted “ we have a score to settle.” It was exactly what fans have said for years and only emphasised after Madrid knocked the Reds out of the competition at the Quarter-final stage last season, albeit Liverpool missing a number of their key stars and their legion of fans at Anfield due to Covid restrictions. And there is little doubt that it has been in the back of the mind of the players and coaches, and speaking to Sky Sports, the newly crowned Football Writer Association Player of the Year said that he was only being honest. “I don't know why we're not allowed to talk about it but I'm ok to talk about it - I wanted that game! I wanted to play Real Madrid before that game [against Manchester City]. “Of course, I'm not giving too much credit to them. They're an unbelievable team with a great coach, great players. When they asked me who I wanted, I said Madrid. It's an easy answer." Salah reflected on the 2018 heartbreak and said while the initial disappointment was raw, he knew that the team had to quickly put it behind them. “You just feel so disappointed, so down," Salah recalled about the Kyiv disappointment. "'Ah come on, not in this game!' But once you have time, it makes you forget. "I had work affairs and then I had a holiday after. In that holiday I just asked - what do you want? To keep crying about it and be sad about it and it takes you down? Or you just fight back. And I fought back in the best way and that's why we're here now. “We had a meeting after and the manager talked to us in pre-season. We were so hungry to win the Champions League the year after and in the Premier League we were very close as well. I think it had some benefits also, not everything was good losing that final but we had benefits." Salah may have scored more goals in his debut season (44), but he is unequivocal that this campaign is his best for the club due to the fact that his all-round game is much better. “This is my best season for me at Liverpool. The goal and assist numbers are high and the way I created chances, the highest number in the Premier League, everything around the game has changed a lot. "I don't feel that good when the team loses games, or when I don't score or make a difference. But when the team wins and I don't score, I'm still very happy. "I just try to find the small things to fire me up. I try to look at a small record there, or another record there to keep my mind busy. I try to be driven with these records to break them, I try to be hungry for something new."
  25. Jurgen Klopp has given Thiago Alcantara the ultimate tribute by saying that the midfielder could fit into any team at domestic or international level. The 31 year-old is what every manager dreams to have in their team. In true terms he is a born winner, having collected honours wherever he has played be it at Barcelona or Bayern Munich at club level and in international Football for Spain from the U/17s through to the seniors. They say that the best players can dictate terms and make the game be played at their tempo, and Thiago is certainly in that bracket with his ability to pinpoint a pass with his delightful technical quality. When Klopp signed him for the Reds at the start of the 20/21 season for a bargain price of £20million, there was a thought especially amongst Reds fans that he was the missing piece in the midfield. But the midfielder endured a stop-start campaign due to Coronavirus and then being crocked in the Derby by Richarlison which set him back a few months. Naturally rusty on his return, and with the team struggling with poor form and a large list of absentees, there was some questions raised whether English game suited his skillset. This season has seen Alcantara suffer heartbreak in a footballing sense as he was ruled out of the Carabao Cup final after injuring his thigh in the warm-up. Since his return to full fitness, the savvy veteran has shown the footballing public in this country what his true worth is by producing a number of midfield masterclass performances. Speaking ahead of the Champions League semi Final Champions League second leg (per the BBC) , Klopp hailed the value of a fully fit Thiago. “In the shape he is now, Thiago could play in each team in the world. “In fact, not only would he play in it, but he would be the outstanding footballer. “All Thiago needs is to be fit and to gain some rhythm, and then he shows his best football. “Physically, as long as he’s in the right shape, he shows everyone how good he is and he was injured when he arrived here." Thiago has not been picked for his national team since playing in the delayed Euro 2020 tournament last July. While they are lucky to have a number of options, Klopp reiterated just how big an asset a fully fit Thiago is. “Of course, Spain have a lot of options and are an incredibly talented football team. At this moment, Thiago is showing his best football and is the outstanding footballer.”
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