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Cristiano Ronaldo admits to Manchester United change ahead of Liverpool clash

icLiverpool.co.uk - Sat, 10/23/2021 - 14:32
Cristiano Ronaldo has addressed his style of play ahead of Liverpool's meeting with Manchester United on Sunday
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Ozan Kabak reveals Jurgen Klopp wish and Virgil Van Dijk message after Liverpool loan

icLiverpool.co.uk - Sat, 10/23/2021 - 13:28
Ozan Kabak is back in the Premier League this season with Norwich City following his brief loan spell at Liverpool last campaign
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Ozan Kabak reveals Jurgen Klopp wish and Virgil Van Dijk message after Liverpool loan

LiverpoolEcho.co.uk - Sat, 10/23/2021 - 13:28
Ozan Kabak is back in the Premier League this season with Norwich City following his brief loan spell at Liverpool last campaign
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Trent Alexander-Arnold confirms tactical switch Liverpool made this season

LiverpoolEcho.co.uk - Sat, 10/23/2021 - 13:18
Trent Alexander-Arnold has spoken about Liverpool's renewed attacking threat that has made Mohamed Salah even more lethal
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Trent Alexander-Arnold confirms tactical switch Liverpool made this season

icLiverpool.co.uk - Sat, 10/23/2021 - 13:18
Trent Alexander-Arnold has spoken about Liverpool's renewed attacking threat that has made Mohamed Salah even more lethal
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Raphael Varane injury update as Manchester United sweat over key players ahead of Liverpool

LiverpoolEcho.co.uk - Sat, 10/23/2021 - 13:12
Manchester United have given an update on Raphael Varane's fitness as well as other injury news ahead of Sunday's game with Liverpool
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Raphael Varane injury update as Manchester United sweat over key players ahead of Liverpool

icLiverpool.co.uk - Sat, 10/23/2021 - 13:12
Manchester United have given an update on Raphael Varane's fitness as well as other injury news ahead of Sunday's game with Liverpool
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Both teams to score accumulator predictions

Goal.com - Sat, 10/23/2021 - 12:36
Both teams to score accumulator predictions this weekend | Goal.comPhil KitromilidesOct 23, 2021 08:00 UTC +00:00

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Barcelona vs Real Madrid - Both teams to score at 1/2 (1.50) with bet365

Both teams to score has paid out in 27 of the last 34 editions of El Clasico in all competitions including in both meetings between the sides last season.

Neither team may be at their best but they will still feel confident of finding the back of the net in the biggest fixture in the La Liga calendar.

Ansu Fati has returned from injury in fine form for Barca, while Karim Benzema is enjoying one of his best scoring runs ever, to give both attacks a real focal point. 

Editors' Picks Atalanta vs Udinese - Both teams to score at 3/4 (1.75) with bet365

Atalanta's games can generally be relied upon to produce goals at both ends with this selection paying out in six of their eight Serie A matches this term.

It also proved a winning selection in spectacular fashion on Wednesday night in the Champions League during their 3-2 defeat to Manchester United.

Udinese are not the most prolific side in Italy but they have been scoring consistently and have plenty of goal threats throughout the team with their 10 league strikes this term coming from seven different players.

This fixture has a history of producing entertaining encounters with both teams to score paying out in 11 of the last 13 competitive meetings.

Bayern Munich vs Hoffenheim - Both teams to score at 8/13 (1.61) with bet365 

The Bavarians have scored in each of their last 55 matches in the Bundesliga, but this season they have also been conceding, keeping just two clean sheets in their eight encounters.

Hoffenheim for their part are one of the division's top scorers this term and have been something of a bogey side for the Munich outfit over the last few years, scoring 10 of their last 11 meetings.

Manchester United vs Liverpool - Both teams to score at 8/15 (1.53) with bet365

One of the oldest rivalries in the Premier League plays out at Old Trafford on Sunday where the two top scoring sides in the division meet.

The Merseysiders have been in extraordinary scoring form, particularly on the road where they have netted at least three goals in each of their last eight games in all competitions.

Both teams to score have paid out in nine of United's 12 competitive fixtures this term and has an excellent chance of doing so once more this weekend. 

Odds correct at the time of writing. Please gamble responsibly.

All four bets pay around 9/2 (5.50) for a 1pt stake with bet365

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Klopp, Keita and Liverpool's midfield puzzle

Goal.com - Sat, 10/23/2021 - 12:36
Klopp, Keita and the Liverpool midfield puzzle that is yet to be solved | Goal.comNeil JonesOct 23, 2021 08:00 UTC +00:00

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Jurgen Klopp could hardly have been clearer, or more defiant.

“You tell me,” he said, spreading his arms wide. “If you would sign a midfielder, tell me a name. What do you want?”

That was back in August, the Liverpool boss defending the club’s decision not to sign a replacement for the recently-departed Gini Wijnaldum.

Editors' Picks

“We’ve never said we don’t want to improve,” Klopp added. “But count our midfielders. Different profiles. Now tell me which player we need? What should the [new] player have?”

Klopp’s rationale was clear. Wijnaldum had gone, but in Fabinho, Jordan Henderson, Thiago Alcantara, James Milner, Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, and with Curtis Jones and Harvey Elliott emerging, he was adamant the Reds had enough numbers, and enough quality, to move forward.

Fair enough, you might say, but a little more than two months on from that press conference, Liverpool’s midfield puzzle is one which remains unsolved. Not a problem as such, just something to look at in the quest for perfection.

It feels more than a little harsh to pick holes in a team which is on a 21-game unbeaten run in all competitions. Not since 1989, during Kenny Dalglish’s first spell as manager, have Liverpool managed better.

They are second in the Premier League, top of their Champions League group with a 100 per cent record, and have scored at least three goals in each of their last eight away matches, most recently the thrilling win over Atletico Madrid at the Wanda Metropolitano.

Clearly, they are some team, and well in the frame to win big honours this season. Beat Manchester United at Old Trafford on Sunday - and they are the favourites with most bookmakers - and the Anfield garden will look very rosy indeed.

Yet the midfield question remains. What is Klopp’s preferred trio, and can they stay fit? Can the tried-and-trusted continue to deliver, and are the others, the youngsters and the rotation players, capable of stepping up on a regular basis? 

It is Keita, more than anyone, who has become the centre of the discussion. Plus ça change, you could say. Three years into his Reds career, few players create as much talk or provoke such strong feelings as the Guinea international. A misunderstood gem or an expensive flop? You pick your side and you stick to it, it seems.

We can blame Klopp for this week’s debate, in fairness. It was his decision to substitute Keita at half-time against Atletico Madrid, and it is not the first time the 26-year-old has been sacrificed early when Liverpool have been seeking to regain control of a big game.

Remember April, away to Real Madrid? Keita didn’t even last until the break then, replaced on 42 minutes with the Reds 2-0 down. 

“It was not about Naby,” Klopp said that night, and he repeated those sentiments on Tuesday evening.

“It is really important to me that nobody thinks we played the first half – or the second part of the first half – because of Naby,” he told his post-match press conference.

Fair enough, although perhaps Klopp’s most telling line was that Liverpool “just had to defend the right side a bit better”. That was the area Keita had patrolled in the first 45 minutes, the area in which he (and others, let’s be fair) had been exposed for both Atleti goals. 

So it wasn’t about Keita, but it kind of was. Liverpool needed Fabinho on the pitch, and Klopp preferred to keep Henderson and Milner on, believing they would offer greater stability, concentration and physicality.

It will be interesting to see what happens at Old Trafford this weekend, then. Will Keita keep his place or will Klopp shake things up again? And what will it say if he does?

Last season, Keita didn’t play another minute after that Real Madrid substitution. The circumstances this time were different but he could be forgiven for wondering why he was the one singled out again, especially since he had delivered Liverpool’s second goal against Atleti with a 25-yard volley, as pure a strike as you could ever wish to see.

In a way, that is Keita’s Liverpool career in a nutshell. One step forward, swiftly followed by a backwards one. Moments of genuine class and promise, and then a setback which makes you wonder if he will ever truly be the player Reds fans thought they were getting from Leipzig back in 2018.

He still retains huge support among Liverpool fans, and why wouldn’t he? He works as hard as anyone, his underlying numbers are good and when he plays well - as he did against Watford last weekend, or at Crystal Palace last season - the Reds look an even more dangerous and exciting side going forward.

The issue is one of consistency, both of selection and of performance. Klopp regularly talks about Keita’s quality and potential, but it is clear that he still trusts others, notably Milner and Henderson, more, especially in the difficult moments. 

He was right to point out that Atletico was Keita’s fifth game in 14 days, a significant workload for a player with a history of muscle injuries, but it is somewhat telling that a player signed for more than £52 million ($72m) - the third most expensive transfer in Liverpool history, don’t forget - has only once managed to play five consecutive matches for the club. And that was in his first season on Merseyside.

It would be bold, but not entirely surprising, if Klopp were to stick with Keita against United. He has never started at Old Trafford before, but he would surely relish the opportunity to answer some of the questions being asked in the wake of the Atletico game. It would be a significant show of faith from the manager, a confidence boost at just the right time.

Keita, don't forget, could do with a decent run of form for a different reason too. 

Much is being made of Mohamed Salah’s contract situation as he approaches the final 18 months of his current deal, but Keita, like Oxlade-Chamberlain, is in the same position. 

And unlike Salah, those two don’t have four years’ worth of world-class performances, or the attention of the world’s top clubs, to help them negotiate an extension.

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With Liverpool linked with a number of up-and-coming midfielders - most notably Jude Bellingham and Florian Wirtz - Keita knows he is under pressure to show he can be part of Liverpool’s long-term future.

A big performance on Sunday would be an ideal place to start, then.

Over to you, Jurgen...

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Salah: I want to end my career at Liverpool

Goal.com - Sat, 10/23/2021 - 12:36
Salah reveals desire to stay at Liverpool for rest of career | Goal.comAndrew SteelOct 22, 2021 19:27 UTC +00:00

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Mohamed Salah has said that he would love to remain at Liverpool for the rest of his career, but added that his future remains out of his hands.

The Egypt international, arguably in the form of his career for Jurgen Klopp, will see his current contract at Anfield expire in June 2023, and is yet to pen an extension.

But while the Reds continue to mull over a prospective package for the striker, Salah has now put the ball in their court by stating that cannot see himself playing against the club in the future.

Editors' Picks What has been said?

"If you ask me, I would love to stay until the last day of my football career, but I can't say much about that - it's not in my hands," the forward told Sky Sports News .

"It depends on what the club want, not on me. At the moment I can't see myself ever playing against Liverpool. That would make me sad.

"It's hard, I don't want to talk about it, but it would make me really sad. At the moment I don't see myself playing against Liverpool but let's see what will happen in the future."

The correspondent's view

Goal's Liverpool correspondent Neil Jones reacted to Salah's interview, saying the pressure is now on the club's owners to keep the Egyptian.

Over to you then, Fenway Sports Group. Mohamed Salah has just ensured that the pressure on Liverpool’s owners will be ramped up in the coming days and months.

And rightly so. ‘Sign him up’ has been the message from supporters for weeks, as Salah’s Anfield contract edges towards its final 18 months. Now the man himself has put the ball firmly in the club’s court.

The Egyptian, we know, wants a deal which would make him the highest-paid player in Liverpool’s history, but with each masterful performance he delivers, each magnificent goal he scores, the argument becomes stronger.

Give him what he wants, or risk losing one of the club’s best ever players. Salah’s form this season is as good as it has ever been.

He has now publicly stated that he wants to stay on Merseyside, and while Liverpool are understandably wary about breaking their wage structure, his influence on Jurgen Klopp’s team, his status in the game and the potential cost of replacing the 29-year-old, must all be factored into any decision.

In short, can Liverpool afford NOT to give their star man a new deal? Special players demand special treatment, and Mohamed Salah is certainly one of those.

The time to act is now.

Article continues below The bigger picture

Salah will look to once more rise to the occasion when he leads Liverpool's attack against Manchester United in the Premier League on Sunday.

The Egypt star has scored 12 goals in 11 games so far this season, netting in all but one of his eight Premier League games in 2021-22.

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LIVE: Havertz leads Chelsea attack vs. Norwich

ESPN.com - Sat, 10/23/2021 - 12:36
With Romelu Lukaku and Timo Werner both out injured, Kai Havertz will spearhead Chelsea’s front line against bottom-of-the-table Norwich. Follow LIVE with ESPN!
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Агент Салаха требует у «Ливерпуля» зарплату более £ 400 тыс. в неделю для футболиста

Чемпионат.ру - Sat, 10/23/2021 - 12:36
Рами Аббас, агент нападающего «Ливерпуля» Мохамеда Салаха, требует для своего клиента зарплату более £ 400 тыс. в неделю (€ 472 тыс.). Из-за этого переговоры с командой продвигаются тяжело....
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'That’s probably why Liverpool bought him' - Youngster gets big praise after position experiment

LiverpoolEcho.co.uk - Sat, 10/23/2021 - 12:15
Liverpool defender Sepp Van den Berg has impressed during his loan spells with Preston North End
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'That’s probably why Liverpool bought him' - Youngster gets big praise after position experiment

icLiverpool.co.uk - Sat, 10/23/2021 - 12:15
Liverpool defender Sepp Van den Berg has impressed during his loan spells with Preston North End
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Curtis Jones can help address alarming Liverpool trend at Manchester United

LiverpoolEcho.co.uk - Sat, 10/23/2021 - 12:00
Liverpool have been heading in one direction in recent weeks and Curtis Jones can change that at Manchester United
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Curtis Jones can help address alarming Liverpool trend at Manchester United

icLiverpool.co.uk - Sat, 10/23/2021 - 12:00
Liverpool have been heading in one direction in recent weeks and Curtis Jones can change that at Manchester United
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Jamie Carragher has exposed Manchester United truth and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer doesn't like it

LiverpoolEcho.co.uk - Sat, 10/23/2021 - 11:25
In this week's Blood Red, Paul Gorst says Liverpool can pile the pressure on Manchester United at Old Trafford this Sunday
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Jamie Carragher has exposed Manchester United truth and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer doesn't like it

icLiverpool.co.uk - Sat, 10/23/2021 - 11:25
In this week's Blood Red, Paul Gorst says Liverpool can pile the pressure on Manchester United at Old Trafford this Sunday
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Security measures 'ramped up' for Manchester United vs Liverpool with plan in place

LiverpoolEcho.co.uk - Sat, 10/23/2021 - 10:50
Manchester United's home meeting with Liverpool was postponed back in May after supporters forced their way into Old Trafford and caused damage to the stadium
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