Liverpool FC on Sky Sports

Subscribe to Liverpool FC on Sky Sports feed Liverpool FC on Sky Sports
Liverpool News
Updated: 11 hours 51 min ago

Alisson: Barca comeback with me forever

Mon, 05/20/2019 - 13:12

Last Updated: 20/05/19 1:18pm

Alisson was part of Liverpool's memorable comeback against Barcelona Alisson was part of Liverpool's memorable comeback against Barcelona Alisson was part of Liverpool's memorable comeback against Barcelona

Alisson Becker intends to tell his grandchildren the miraculous tale of how Liverpool reached the Champions League final.

Madrid will host the showpiece clash with Tottenham on Saturday June 1 following Liverpool's remarkable comeback against Barcelona in the semi-finals.

Trailing 3-0 from the first leg at the Nou Camp, Jurgen Klopp's side produced a performance for the ages to beat Barca 4-0 at Anfield six days later.

"That memory will be with me forever, it's a story that I'll be telling my children and my grandchildren," Alisson told UEFA.

"I'm just hoping that we can see this story through, God willing, to get the title, which is our main objective."

The 26-year-old played for Roma against Liverpool in last season's semi-final and has now experienced the Anfield atmosphere from both sides.

"Incredible, incredible," he said.

"I played here against Liverpool and I experienced the power that the fans gave to the team on the pitch. They put a lot of pressure on you, it's not easy playing here against our team.

"Now that I'm playing here I've experienced the amazing things that we have achieved in this Champions League, qualifying for the final in the way that we did, returning from a difficult defeat that many thought was impossible.

"It was achievable through God's blessing, the work that we put in and a lot of dedication, plus the support from the fans on the night which was incredible."

Alisson's save against Napoli secured Liverpool's place in the last 16 Alisson's save against Napoli secured Liverpool's place in the last 16 Alisson's save against Napoli secured Liverpool's place in the last 16

So, what was Alisson's favourite personal moment of the European campaign?

"Without a doubt, the save against Napoli (in the final group game) was pretty much the last touch of the ball and that save could be counted as a goal, I say.

"But of course, my team-mates played their part as well and that's what makes it so special, to be part of that group and to be able to help them. They are such incredible players."

Sky Sports Racing Selector

Select 7 winners for your chance to win £1,000

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

De Ligt set to join Barca in summer

Mon, 05/20/2019 - 10:56

Last Updated: 20/05/19 11:35am

Ajax captain Matthijs de Ligt helped Ajax reach the Champions League semi-finals Ajax captain Matthijs de Ligt helped Ajax reach the Champions League semi-finals Ajax captain Matthijs de Ligt helped Ajax reach the Champions League semi-finals

Matthijs de Ligt looks set to leave Ajax for Barcelona this summer, irrespective of interest from English clubs, Sky Sports News understands.

The £65m-rated Netherlands international has been linked with Liverpool and Manchester United after impressing in his side's run to the semi-finals of the Champions League.

But the 19-year-old Ajax captain is understood to be closing on a move to the Nou Camp.

De Ligt plays alongside Liverpool's Virgil van Djik in the Netherlands side but it is believed Jurgen Klopp does not feel he needs another centre-back.

0:22 More than 100,000 Ajax fans turned out in Amsterdam to celebrate their domestic league and cup double. More than 100,000 Ajax fans turned out in Amsterdam to celebrate their domestic league and cup double.

The defender would leave Ajax on a high, having helped them secure a domestic double this season, including their first Eredivisie title since 2014.

Sky Sports Racing Selector

Select 7 winners for your chance to win £1,000

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Transfer Centre - Kompany leaves City LIVE!

Sat, 05/18/2019 - 07:00

[unable to retrieve full-text content]

The latest news and rumours, including the latest on Vincent Kompany as he leaves Manchester City to join Anderlecht as the club's player-manager.
Categories: LFC NEWS

De Bruyne: No sympathy for Liverpool

Fri, 05/17/2019 - 22:34
Follow Man City vs Watford in our dedicated live blog on the Sky Sports app and SkySports.com on Saturday; kick-off is 5pm

Last Updated: 18/05/19 11:57am

Kevin De Bruyne says he does not feel sorry for Liverpool Kevin De Bruyne says he does not feel sorry for Liverpool Kevin De Bruyne says he does not feel sorry for Liverpool

Kevin De Bruyne feels no sympathy for Liverpool after Manchester City narrowly pipped them to the Premier League title.

City won their last 14 games to beat the Reds by a single point in a compelling and high-quality title race.

Liverpool's 97-point tally was the third-highest ever achieved in the competition but, while City's Belgian playmaker acknowledges their effort, he cannot feel sorry for them.

De Bruyne said: "It's a remarkable effort, but it means that we were just better than them in the end.

"I don't feel sorry for them because I don't think they'd feel sorry for us. I don't think anybody felt sorry about the way we went out of the Champions League. You take it.

"I know how they feel because you're going to feel disappointed. We'd feel the same if it happened to us.

"But we're still competitors. It's been a great battle. I can understand the feelings they have but to feel sorry for them is maybe going a little too far."

De Bruyne suffered injuries to both knees this season De Bruyne suffered injuries to both knees this season De Bruyne suffered injuries to both knees this season

For all City's success this season, it has been a frustrating campaign for De Bruyne - their player of the season last year - due to a succession of injuries.

The 27-year-old featured just 18 times in the Premier League largely due to two separate knee injuries and a number of other problems.

Despite injury problems, De Bruyne has so far claimed 10 assists this term Despite injury problems, De Bruyne has so far claimed 10 assists this term Despite injury problems, De Bruyne has so far claimed 10 assists this term

He returned from his latest setback to feature off the bench as City won the title at Brighton last weekend. He now wants to end on a glorious high by helping them complete the treble in the FA Cup final against Watford on Saturday.

De Bruyne said: "It makes up for it in a way but obviously it's not been the most fun season.

"It's been one of those years where I started really badly with two big injuries. I came back in the right way but obviously, my body couldn't cope with all the games.

"It's good to be back with the team for the prizes, the Brighton game and now the final."

0:41 Pep Guardiola thanked Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool for an incredible title race, after being named LMA Premier League Manager of the Year. Pep Guardiola thanked Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool for an incredible title race, after being named LMA Premier League Manager of the Year.

Aside from the Champions League quarter-final exit to Tottenham, City have enjoyed another successful campaign under Pep Guardiola. But the ever-demanding City boss says reputations will count for little next term.

He said: "Every player has to feel, 'I have to play good or I don't play'. They have to feel, 'I have to win again, if not I have problems, I'm in trouble, I cannot be longer here'.

"People say how beautiful it is but we have to win again and again and again and the players have to feel that.

"It was incredible but for the first day from next season we start from zero."

Follow Man City vs Watford in our dedicated live blog on the Sky Sports app and SkySports.com on Saturday.

Sky Sports Racing Selector

Select 7 winners for your chance to win £1,000

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Reds could ban fans over rogue tickets

Fri, 05/17/2019 - 12:00

Last Updated: 17/05/19 12:01pm

Liverpool play Tottenham in the Champions League final on June 1 Liverpool play Tottenham in the Champions League final on June 1 Liverpool play Tottenham in the Champions League final on June 1

Liverpool say they could impose Anfield bans on any supporters found to be selling Champions League final tickets for marked up prices online.

Jurgen Klopp's side face Tottenham in European football's showpiece event at the Wanda Metropolitano in Madrid on June 1, which has led to a scramble for match tickets from both sets of supporters.

UEFA have allocated just over 50 per cent of the tickets to fans, which led to Liverpool and Tottenham supporters' trusts urging sponsors to return theirs.

Jurgen Klopp's team could end the season with a trophy Jurgen Klopp's team could end the season with a trophy Jurgen Klopp's team could end the season with a trophy

Tickets on resale sites online are selling for up to €40,000 (£35,000) and Liverpool have released a statement reminding supporters over potentially fake tickets and warning them anyone caught trying to make profits on secondary and unofficial ticketing sites will face sanctions.

"Fans are warned that buying tickets via unofficial online sources does not guarantee tickets are genuine or that they will actually receive them," the statement said.

Transfer Talk: Inside Man Utd's overhaul

United We Stand editor Andy Mitten explains the potential ins and outs at Old Trafford this summer…

"As part of its commitment to tackle ticket touting, the club has created a test purchase programme to help protect supporters from purchasing via unauthorised ticketing sites. The programme aims to identify and stop these sales.

Divock Origi scored the crucial goal for Liverpool in the semi-final against Barcelona at Anfield Divock Origi scored the crucial goal for Liverpool in the semi-final against Barcelona at Anfield Divock Origi scored the crucial goal for Liverpool in the semi-final against Barcelona at Anfield

"While selling or offering to sell tickets without the permission of the club is a criminal offence, LFC also intends to impose sanctions on any supporters found to be selling tickets through unofficial secondary ticketing sites.

"Sanctions could include ticket-buying suspensions and indefinite bans from Anfield. It could also mean that any tickets for the Champions League final in Madrid are invalid, and purchasers will be unable to gain access to Estadio Metropolitano."

Sky Sports Racing Selector

Select 7 winners for your chance to win £1,000

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Insight: Who should Liverpool sign?

Fri, 05/17/2019 - 06:00
What can we expect from Jurgen Klopp this summer?

Last Updated: 17/05/19 11:16am

Liverpool just missed out on clinching the Premier League title and have a Champions League final to look forward to - so where could they improve?

Their impressive campaign has been boosted by last summer's signings Alisson, Fabinho, Naby Keita and Xherdan Shaqiri.

So who could come in to strengthen Jurgen Klopp's group for next term? And who could be heading for the exit door? Read on to find out…

The pundit's verdict

Phil Thompson: "No matter who you are, you have to strengthen while you are on top. Don't wait until things go wrong. It was always the way of doing things in our heyday. No matter what we won, we always brought in two players to strengthen and give more options on the field and regenerate the dressing room.

"If Liverpool can, I would look at a creative midfield player and another striker. Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino are the three, but it's a case of getting someone in who will be sitting on the bench for most of the season.

"It's like in midfield, we have a lot of players who are quite similar. We need someone with a creative spark and to give us more goals from that department. It is hard to find a decent striker who will sit on the bench and that is the problem Klopp will have. The squad is relatively young which is good and have at least another five years together so we look as though we are in a good position."

What do the stats say?

Liverpool have had a fantastic season and, as a result are top - or among the the top sides - when it comes to a range of stats, from having the best defensive record in the league (Alisson won the Premier League Golden Glove with 21 clean sheets) to goals scored (89).

This Liverpool squad appears to have the best years ahead of it, too - their average starting XI was the fifth-youngest in the Premier League this term.

One area Klopp may target is results against the rest of the big six. While Liverpool were second in this mini-table, Manchester City earned six more points than their title rivals. Could Liverpool target a player capable of unlocking a first-class defence or grabbing a decisive goal?

The manager's view

Klopp on why keeping hold of key players is crucial: "I don't want to talk exactly what we will do, but I don't think this is a team at the moment where we have to spend the big money or whatever. The best way to do it is bring together a group of players, try to develop them altogether and then stay together for a while. That was maybe the main problem of Liverpool for the last decade. When they had a good team after a season they went all over the world. That will not happen this year for sure."

I don't think this is a team at the moment where we have to spend the big money or whatever.

Jurgen Klopp

Klopp on a potentially quiet summer: "The team is pretty well balanced. Will it be the biggest transfer window of LFC? No, probably not, I think it would have been a surprise if I said yes."

What we know - The Sky Sports News insight

Vinny O'Connor: "Given the consistency Liverpool have shown this season, it'll be a case of the odd tweak with their squad.

"Daniel Sturridge is out of contract, so Liverpool are exploring the possibility of strengthening their attacking options.

"Divock Origi has shown glimpses this season while both Sadio Mane and Mo Salah have played through the middle. Even Gini Wijnaldum stepped into the role against Barcelona, but Liverpool need greater cover for the influential Roberto Firmino.

Transfer Centre

Stay up to date with all the latest transfer news

"Naby Keita is expected to be better for the experience of his first season in English football. While, as cliched as it may be, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain's return to fitness after a year out will be like a new signing, which means midfield is unlikely to be an issue.

"Alberto Moreno will leave the club this summer, so cover and competition at left back for Andy Robertson is another area that will need addressing.

"Liverpool are also being talked of as possible suitors for Matthijs de Ligt in a £75m deal to further improve a back line that kept 21 Premier League clean sheets. The Ajax centre back has established a partnership with Virgil Van Dijk at international level.

"It will be interesting to see if Simon Mignolet decides to look for regular first team football, which could leave Liverpool needing an experienced deputy for Alisson."

Which positions are Liverpool targeting?

A back-up left-back and, if a special player becomes available, another forward.

Read on: The summer transfer plan series continues...

Insight: Who should Manchester City sign?
Insight: Who should Manchester United sign?
Insight: Who should Newcastle sign?
Insight: Who should Norwich sign?
Insight: Who should Sheffield United sign?

Rank the players Liverpool have been linked with Sky Sports Racing Selector

Select 7 winners for your chance to win £1,000

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Sponsors urged to return CL final tickets

Thu, 05/16/2019 - 08:15

Last Updated: 16/05/19 9:33am

Sponsors have been urged to return their UEFA Champions League final tickets Sponsors have been urged to return their UEFA Champions League final tickets Sponsors have been urged to return their UEFA Champions League final tickets

Liverpool and Tottenham supporters' trusts have urged sponsors to return their Champions League tickets to help fans.

The two Premier League sides will contest just the second-ever all-English Champions League final on June 1 at Atletico Madrid's Wanda Metropolitano stadium.

However, UEFA have allocated just over 50 per cent of the tickets to the clubs' fans.

A joint statement from Spirit of Shankly and Tottenham Supporters' Trusts said: "Spirit of Shankly and Tottenham Hotspur Supporters' Trust - the independent official fan groups of LFC and THFC - are calling on the main sponsors of the UEFA Champions League to return a proportion of the tickets they have received for the Champions League final to the pot for supporters of both clubs.

"We ask Nissan, Playstation, Gazprom, PepsiCo, Banco Santander, Mastercard, Heineken and Expedia Group to help redress the balance in the current unfair allocation that means fans of both competing clubs receive less than 25% of available tickets.

"As major sponsors of the UEFA Champions League, your companies appreciate the passion and dedication of the fans who follow their teams and make every game a spectacle.

The supporters' trusts say the occasion in Madrid will be lifted by increasing the number of passionate fans in the stadium The supporters' trusts say the occasion in Madrid will be lifted by increasing the number of passionate fans in the stadium The supporters' trusts say the occasion in Madrid will be lifted by increasing the number of passionate fans in the stadium

"But many of those fans who have followed their club throughout this season will miss out on the biggest game of all, as will thousands more loyal supporters.

"SOS and THST believe such a gesture by the sponsors would help lift the occasion by increasing the number of passionate fans inside the stadium, and increase each brand's standing on a global scale.

"We also ask that each sponsor lobbies UEFA to allocate tickets for future finals on a fairer, more equitable split that has supporters benefit."

Sky Sports Racing Selector

Select 7 winners for your chance to win £1,000

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Wijnaldum: We deserve a trophy

Wed, 05/15/2019 - 13:09

Last Updated: 15/05/19 2:27pm

Georginio Wijnaldum says Liverpool's season deserves a trophy Georginio Wijnaldum says Liverpool's season deserves a trophy Georginio Wijnaldum says Liverpool's season deserves a trophy

Georginio Wijnaldum says Liverpool's season deserves to be rewarded with the Champions League trophy.

The 28-year-old midfielder wants Liverpool's 'wonderful' season rewarded with Champions League final success against Tottenham on June 1.

After missing out on the Premier League title by a single point to defending champions Manchester City, Wijnaldum knows what the fans want.

The Netherlands midfielder said it would be 'sad' if Liverpool do not win the Champions League The Netherlands midfielder said it would be 'sad' if Liverpool do not win the Champions League The Netherlands midfielder said it would be 'sad' if Liverpool do not win the Champions League

"It would be really sad if we finish the season without a title. I think this season deserves one," he said.

"We were quite consistent this season and we did so well. Now is the challenge to finish with a title to make the season complete."

Wijnaldum has made 46 appearances for the Reds this campaign - the most in midfield - and has been a consistent performer throughout.

2:56 Highlights from Liverpool's win over Wolves in the Premier League Highlights from Liverpool's win over Wolves in the Premier League

His two goals against Barcelona in the Champions League semi-final helped Liverpool complete a 4-0 win at Anfield to send them through to the final 4-3 on aggregate.

He acknowledges the final with Spurs in Madrid will be tough but, unlike the race for the Premier League, Liverpool's fate rests in their own hands.

Wijnaldum added: "The last couple of games were basically games where we could only win and look at what City were doing. They won also. Fair enough, they are champions.

"Now we have a game that we can control, so we have to bring that to a good end. But It's going to be tough."

Sky Sports Racing Selector

Select 7 winners for your chance to win £1,000

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Liverpool 2018/19 season stats

Wed, 05/15/2019 - 09:49

Last Updated: 15/05/19 9:50am

Liverpool took Manchester City to the final day in this season's title race, but how did they fare in the stats? Use our range of interactive tools to find out...

Use the interactive charts below to find out how the season panned out, before exploring in-depth team stats and discovering where Jurgen Klopp's side ranked against other top-flight sides in key metrics.

You can also select any squad player to find out how they performed this term and where they ranked in a range of stats, before pitting them against fellow team-mates.

How it finishedHow it changed The team stats How they ranked The player stats How they ranked Compare the players Sky Sports Racing Selector

Select 7 winners for your chance to win £1,000

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

City deny players' song linked to Cox

Wed, 05/15/2019 - 00:00
Liverpool have chosen not to comment on the video

Last Updated: 15/05/19 11:39am

Manchester City have denied accusations Manchester City have denied accusations Manchester City have denied accusations

Manchester City have denied accusations their players celebrated winning the Premier League with a chant relating to Liverpool fan Sean Cox or the Hillsborough tragedy.

A video emerged on social media on Tuesday which appeared to show City players and staff singing a distasteful version of Liverpool's 'Allez, Allez, Allez' song as they travelled on a plane following Sunday's victory at Brighton which clinched the title.

The song, which City fans had changed the lyrics to, makes reference to Liverpool fans "crying in the stands" and being "battered on the streets" at last year's Champions League final in Kiev, which Liverpool lost 3-1 to Real Madrid. It also contains the lyric "victims of it all".

Liverpool fan Cox was attacked by Roma supporters ahead of their Champions League semi-final at Anfield.

A Manchester City statement insisted the song in question has been a regular chant during the 2018-19 season and refers to the 2018 UEFA Champions League final in Kiev.

"Any suggestion that the lyrics relate to Sean Cox or the Hillsborough tragedy is entirely without foundation," the statement added.

Reports also suggested the song referred to City captain Vincent Kompany injuring Mohamed Salah earlier in the season.

Liverpool have chosen not to comment on the video.

City's win over Brighton ensured they retained the title by a point from second-placed Liverpool.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Utd-PSG ref to take charge of CL final

Tue, 05/14/2019 - 13:05
Skomina awarded Manchester United a 94th-minute penalty, with the help of VAR, against PSG at the Champions League last-16 stage.

Last Updated: 14/05/19 5:59pm

Damir Skomina awarded the controversial penalty which saw Manchester United progress in the Champions League. Damir Skomina awarded the controversial penalty which saw Manchester United progress in the Champions League. Damir Skomina awarded the controversial penalty which saw Manchester United progress in the Champions League.

Slovenia’s Damir Skomina, who refereed Manchester United's comeback over PSG, will take charge of the Champions League final between Tottenham and Liverpool.

It will be the 42-year-old's first Champions League final but he does have experience officiating in European football's showpiece events.

He refereed the Europa League final between Ajax and Manchester United in 2017, as well as the Super Cup encounter between Chelsea and Atletico Madrid in 2012.

He was also the referee to give United a stoppage-time penalty which sent them through their last-16 match with PSG, using video technology to come to the decision.

Skomina officiated England's game against Iceland when they were knocked out of Euro 2016.

Skomina refereed England's Euro 2016 defeat to Iceland Skomina refereed England's Euro 2016 defeat to Iceland Skomina refereed England's Euro 2016 defeat to Iceland

Skomina has taken charge of four Champions League matches this season, including Liverpool's 1-0 win at home to Napoli in December, although the Reds have lost the four other games of theirs he has officiated in.

1:40 Mauricio Pochettino says he will discuss his future at Tottenham after the Champions League final, but admits this could be a moment to 'close a chapter'. Mauricio Pochettino says he will discuss his future at Tottenham after the Champions League final, but admits this could be a moment to 'close a chapter'. Neymar: Skomina 'knows nothing about football' Neymar was watching the game from the stands due to injury Neymar was watching the game from the stands due to injury Neymar was watching the game from the stands due to injury

Neymar was banned for three European matches after making his feelings felt towards Skomina and the three-match officials involved in PSG's defeat to United on social media.

Neymar said on Instagram in March: "This is a disgrace, they put four people that know nothing about football in charge of looking at the replay for VAR.

"There is no penalty. How can it be a handball when it hits his back! Go **** yourselves!"

He has history with Spurs too Skomina awarded Benfica a vital spot-kick moments after waving away protests for a Tottenham penalty in 2014 Skomina awarded Benfica a vital spot-kick moments after waving away protests for a Tottenham penalty in 2014 Skomina awarded Benfica a vital spot-kick moments after waving away protests for a Tottenham penalty in 2014

Spurs fans have bad memories of Skomina after he denied the north London club what they felt was a clear penalty in their Champions League last-16 game away to Benfica in 2014, when Harry Kane seemed to be fouled by Guilherme Siqueira, moments before awarding Benfica a spot-kick.

The game ended in a 2-2 draw, with Tottenham losing 5-3 on aggregate.

Who are the other officials?

At the Wanda Metropolitano, Skomina will be assisted by his countrymen Jure Praprotnik and Robert Vukan. The fourth official will be Antonio Mateu Lahoz from Spain.

The video assistant referee role has been assigned to Danny Makkelie from the Netherlands, who will be supported by Pol van Boekel, Felix Zwayer and Mark Borsch.

Sky Sports Racing Selector

Select 7 winners for your chance to win £1,000

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Klopp plots 'pre-season' for CL final

Tue, 05/14/2019 - 12:14

Last Updated: 14/05/19 12:14pm

Jurgen Klopp says Liverpool have 'two proper weeks as a pre-season for the Champions League final' Jurgen Klopp says Liverpool have 'two proper weeks as a pre-season for the Champions League final' Jurgen Klopp says Liverpool have 'two proper weeks as a pre-season for the Champions League final'

Jurgen Klopp says he will put his Liverpool side through a “pre-season” as they prepare for the Champions League final on June 1.

Liverpool's players have been given this week off to recover from an arduous season in which they pushed Manchester City all the way to the last day in the title race, eventually losing out by one point.

They will reconvene on Monday for a week-long training camp in Marbella - as they did last year before the final in Kiev where they lost 3-1 to Real Madrid - and Klopp says he will put his players through their paces ahead of the showdown with Tottenham at the Wanda Metropolitano.

6:20 The Debate panel discuss whether their failed Premier League title chase will affect Liverpool going forward The Debate panel discuss whether their failed Premier League title chase will affect Liverpool going forward

"We have to do a couple of things in preparation for the Champions League [final], media stuff," Klopp told Liverpool's official website.

"We have to do that, then the boys will have a couple of days off and then we have two proper weeks as a pre-season for the Champions League final.

"We will do that, we will play that, (hopefully) win it, come home and then the people (would) get what they deserve."

Sky Sports Racing Selector

Select 7 winners for your chance to win £1,000

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

'Losing title race will haunt Reds'

Mon, 05/13/2019 - 23:15
Liverpool had seven-point lead in January, but Man City won 14 games in a row on their way to Premier League title glory By Frederick Clayton

Last Updated: 14/05/19 11:31am

6:20 The Debate panel discuss whether their title chase failure will haunt Liverpool The Debate panel discuss whether their title chase failure will haunt Liverpool

Liverpool will be haunted after losing the title race to Manchester City, says Emma Hayes, though Liam Rosenior believes there was little else the Reds could have done.

City clinched the Premier League title with victory at Brighton on Sunday, amassing 98 points, just one more than Liverpool's 97 - an unprecedented amount for a second-placed side in the top flight.

Liverpool had a seven-point lead in January but City surpassed it by winning their final 14 games.

Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool side fell just short of a first Premier League title in 29 years Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool side fell just short of a first Premier League title in 29 years Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool side fell just short of a first Premier League title in 29 years

And while Liverpool won their last nine, Hayes - Chelsea Women's manager - believes that the Reds' excitement got the better of them when they were in control of the title race.

Speaking on The Debate, she said: "There's one thing I sensed around that time, that they got so excited about winning the title, they perhaps didn't keep applying the very things that were getting them from game to game, but it's easy to criticize that.

"When you're in that position and you start to see that, not being able to close that out, will haunt them."

2:26 Liverpool missed a number of chances in a goalless draw with Everton in March Liverpool missed a number of chances in a goalless draw with Everton in March

However, former Hull City and Brighton midfielder Rosenior was quick to defend the Reds.

"They got 97 points," said Rosenior.

"They didn't lose it. Whoever won it absolutely earned it.

"These are two of the best teams of this era. There are no egos, there are top, world-class players. For me, to get 97 points... they lost one game!"

Liverpool were 11 millimetres away from scoring against Man City Liverpool were 11 millimetres away from scoring against Man City Liverpool were 11 millimetres away from scoring against Man City

Liverpool were denied an invincible season - and perhaps the title - when they lost 2-1 to Manchester City in January at the Etihad, almost equalising with an effort that was a mere 11mm away from crossing the goal line. A win would have sent them 10 points clear.

And despite the fine margins that ultimately decided the title, Dion Dublin believed there may be moments that Hayes could see with a "managerial eye", where Liverpool were at fault.

"I've been in that position and nearly blown it," said Hayes. "I know how that feels when you're comfortable and start looking upwards.

2:56 Highlights from Manchester City's win over Liverpool in the Premier League in January Highlights from Manchester City's win over Liverpool in the Premier League in January

"I think when you're in that position, the most important thing to do when you've got excitement is to temper it massively, because it's just human to feel that way. That's not criticism - they've been absolutely brilliant. But the reality is they were seven points, almost three games, ahead.

"Only the players and manager will know what slipped away at the key moment, irrespective of how fabulous they've both been."

Sky Sports Racing Selector

Select 7 winners for your chance to win £1,000

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Thommo: I'd take Coutinho back now

Mon, 05/13/2019 - 15:47

Last Updated: 13/05/19 11:16pm

0:55 Phil Thompson says Philippe Coutinho is not loved at Barcelona as he was at Liverpool, and would bring the Brazilian back to Anfield 'in a heartbeat' Phil Thompson says Philippe Coutinho is not loved at Barcelona as he was at Liverpool, and would bring the Brazilian back to Anfield 'in a heartbeat'

Phil Thompson says he would bring Philippe Coutinho back to Liverpool "in a heartbeat".

The 26-year-old signed for the Spanish champions in January 2018 from Liverpool for £146m and Thompson said the midfielder could bring an extra level of creativity to Jurgen Klopp's side.

Former Liverpool captain Thompson said bringing Coutinho back to the Premier League for half of what Barcelona paid for him would be a shrewd bit of business.

"I would take him back in a heartbeat, but it would have to be now," Thompson told Sky Sports News. "You don't want to leave it another 12 months, I think he still has the ability.

"He's suffered at Barcelona. We've seen him playing out wide on the left, but he's not Neymar.

Barcelona suffered a 4-0 defeat to Liverpool on Coutinho's return to Anfield Barcelona suffered a 4-0 defeat to Liverpool on Coutinho's return to Anfield Barcelona suffered a 4-0 defeat to Liverpool on Coutinho's return to Anfield

"He likes to be in the middle where he can pull strings and is getting on the ball to hurt teams.

"He doesn't do that and he's not a left-winger and that's where he's playing at Barcelona; they don't love him like Liverpool loved him."

2:56 Highlights from Liverpool's win over Wolves in the Premier League. Highlights from Liverpool's win over Wolves in the Premier League.

Coutinho has been linked with a Premier League return, following a quiet season with the Catalan club, scoring just five times in 34 La Liga appearances.

Barcelona fans were angered by their team's performance in defeat to Liverpool in the Champions League semi-final, surrendering a three-goal advantage from the first leg.

Coutinho arrived at the Nou Camp in excellent form, with 12 Liverpool goals in 20 season appearances before his mid-season switch last year, and Thompson said having him back could make the Reds' front three of Mo Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane even more dangerous for opposition defences.

Coutinho has had a difficult season with Barcelona Coutinho has had a difficult season with Barcelona Coutinho has had a difficult season with Barcelona

"He was that little bit clever, that creativity behind those front three that you could go to in games where you knew you were going to have the majority of the possession," said Thompson.

"He could open that door, he could score the goals that would get you the win.

"I would have him back, I don't know about the football club, but he is the one with that ability.

"Knowing our club, we've been very shrewd, maybe there's a buy-back clause in there for maybe less than half what we sold him."

Sky Sports Racing Selector

Select 7 winners for your chance to win £1,000

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Barnes: Liverpool could not do more

Mon, 05/13/2019 - 14:40

Last Updated: 13/05/19 3:40pm

1:05 John Barnes believes Jurgen Klopp has got the maximum out of his Liverpool side after they finished runners-up to an 'exceptional' Manchester City John Barnes believes Jurgen Klopp has got the maximum out of his Liverpool side after they finished runners-up to an 'exceptional' Manchester City

John Barnes says Premier League runners-up Liverpool could not have done any more this season.

But the Anfield legend thinks the Reds are in position to continually challenge for the title in the coming years.

Liverpool beat Wolves 2-0 on Sunday to cap an amazing Premier League campaign, in which they lost just once and accumulated 97 points.

1:32 Phil Thompson said Liverpool's players should have no regrets after winning 97 points but losing out on the Premier League title to Manchester City Phil Thompson said Liverpool's players should have no regrets after winning 97 points but losing out on the Premier League title to Manchester City

But incredibly that was not enough to top the table, as defending champions Manchester City followed up their 100-point 2017/18 campaign with a 98-point effort, to successfully retain the title.

Barnes - who won the First Division twice in his Liverpool days - says his old club can take heart from their huge points tally.

He told Sky Sports: "It's a huge consolation, because any other season we would have won it, obviously apart from City getting 100 points last year.

"To lose one game, to get 97 points and finish second is disappointing but, if you look at the consistency they have shown in every game, it is a fantastic season.

2:56 Highlights from Liverpool's win over Wolves in the Premier League Highlights from Liverpool's win over Wolves in the Premier League

"Unfortunately for us we've come up against one of the best teams in Premier League history in Manchester City, but if you look at our rivals, who finished third, fourth and fifth, they finished 20 points behind.

"That shows how much Liverpool have evolved, that shows how well they have done, and we cannot ask any more than that."

Liverpool remain without a title since 1990 but Barnes thinks the best thing about manager Jurgen Klopp's work at Anfield is that the team are in position to become perennial contenders.

"This is the first year when we have done well, where I have felt we could continue to do it again next year," Barnes added.

"But if you look at what Liverpool have done this season in terms of the demands Klopp puts on this team to play and win football matches, he demands a performance of intensity, of determination, of desire, and that's what you get from Liverpool.

 John Barnes says Liverpool have 'evolved' under manager Jurgen Klopp  John Barnes says Liverpool have 'evolved' under manager Jurgen Klopp John Barnes says Liverpool have 'evolved' under manager Jurgen Klopp

"So next year I'm not going to say we are going to get 97 points and only lose one game, but I know, come the end of the season, we will be there or thereabouts again.

"All you can ask a manager to do is maximise the potential of the team, and Jurgen Klopp has maximised the potential of that team to its fullest.

"We can't ask any more of Liverpool in terms of Improvement. Next year possibly it would be good enough but, if they show that level of consistency again next season, then I'll be happy.

"Yes, we want to win trophies but we want to see the level of consistency whereby we know we will be challenging year in, year out.

"The Premier League is difficult, we hear that in the top six teams anybody can beat anybody, but in terms of what Manchester City and Liverpool have done, they've thrown that rulebook out of the window."

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Neville on City, Pep and how Reds react

Mon, 05/13/2019 - 11:24
City are now on course to become the first team to win the domestic English treble

Last Updated: 13/05/19 11:24am

3:05 Gary Neville tells us where this Man City side rank in the pantheon of Premier League champions... Gary Neville tells us where this Man City side rank in the pantheon of Premier League champions...

Manchester City became the first side in a decade to retain the Premier League after clinching the title on the final day of the season with victory at Brighton on Sunday.

But just how good are Pep Guardiola's team? How hard is it to retain the league? How does their serial-winning manager rank in the pantheon of great coaches? And will Liverpool be able to recover from the heartbreak of finishing runners-up?

City celebrate their 2018/19 title win City celebrate their 2018/19 title win City celebrate their 2018/19 title win

Former Manchester United captain Gary Neville, who won eight Premier League titles during his time at Old Trafford, gives us the answers to all those questions...

Are Manchester City the best Premier League champions ever? 0:40 Gary Neville believes the current Manchester City side is the best team ever assembled in the Premier League Gary Neville believes the current Manchester City side is the best team ever assembled in the Premier League

"I think so. There will be people who debate that. But seeing what they have done the last two seasons - last year was a great achievement, but when you win back-to-back titles, amassing the points they have, withstanding that challenge they have had from Liverpool - which was relentless right to the very end, makes them a great side.

"Pep Guardiola has come to England and people mention the Champions League, but I would dismiss that… To do what he has done the last two years is unprecedented and incredible. The points tallies is just out of this world and the football he has played...

This is the greatest (Premier League team ever) in terms of points, which you cannot deny

Gary Neville

"So yes, I think you can say this is the greatest in terms of points, which you cannot deny."

How hard is it to win back-to-back titles? Manchester United were the last team to retain the Premier League title under Fergie Manchester United were the last team to retain the Premier League title under Fergie Manchester United were the last team to retain the Premier League title under Fergie

"It is a mentality and a mentality that comes from the coach. At Manchester United, with Sir Alex [Ferguson], we had one of the most incredible people in charge of the football club. And he instilled a mentality into a group of players that meant they never felt like they succeeded, that when they won one league they come back the next season and perform at exactly the same levels. Giving the same levels of focus and concentration every single day. Never believe they had made it.

"And I think what Pep Guardiola did at the start of the season - Vincent Kompany alluded to a meeting he had where Guardiola demanded of them of what was going to happen this year.

"The players have lifted their game, everybody has tried to beat City this season more than ever and Liverpool have done incredibly well to get anywhere near them. It is a mentality thing and Guardiola is one of the greatest coaches we have ever seen."

Is Pep the greatest manager ever? Guardiola can now rank alongside Arsene Wenger, Jose Mourinho and Sir Alex Ferguson when it comes to the greatest Premier League managers, says Neville Guardiola can now rank alongside Arsene Wenger, Jose Mourinho and Sir Alex Ferguson when it comes to the greatest Premier League managers, says Neville Guardiola can now rank alongside Arsene Wenger, Jose Mourinho and Sir Alex Ferguson when it comes to the greatest Premier League managers, says Neville

"You could argue he is the greatest coach the world has ever seen given what he has done in Spain, and what he has now done in Germany and England.

"The way in which he coaches his teams to play is incredible, his values and principles in playing are well set. He has got control, which is more important than ever today when you are at a football club. You are in no doubt who the leader is of the football club, none of the players are bigger than him, he will leave all those players out if they fall below the standards.

"He wants to win, he is desperate to win, that is important. But most of all, he impacts on the mentality of the players, that is the most important thing. The great managers are psychologists, they get into the head of the players and make them believe they can do or achieve anything.

"And what we have seen with Guardiola is he can do that in different countries, in different leagues, with different players. What you see with him is… I always remember that Monday Night Football we did last season where he said he was desperate to win back-to-back titles. In fact, he put that at the top of his list ahead of the Champions League and he said I will become less popular with my team next season with what I am going to demand from them.

You think of Arsene Wenger, Sir Alex Ferguson, Jose Mourinho and now Pep Guardiola really are the great managers of the Premier League era

Gary Neville

"You could see maybe that at times this season, he has not let them off. But what they have done these last two or three months I have never seen before. I thought one of the two teams would wilt and show signs of vulnerability - they have not done and I have never seen a title race like it.

"Guardiola has come to England and what he achieved on Sunday - and he has a chance to win a domestic treble - puts him up there with the great managers. You think of Arsene Wenger, Sir Alex Ferguson, Jose Mourinho and now Pep Guardiola really are the great managers of the Premier League era.

"Guardiola - I do not know how long he is going to stay in England and I am sure the other clubs will be hoping he leaves quite quickly. But if he stays for another two or three years, he could go on and win another two or three championships easily."

How do Liverpool recover? 0:22 Neville says he was surprised by how hard Liverpool pushed Manchester City in the Premier League title race Neville says he was surprised by how hard Liverpool pushed Manchester City in the Premier League title race

"They have two choices really - they believe they will never get as good again, they will be disappointed and carry that dejection into next season.

"Or they will think, 'No we are a great side, we just fell short at the end not through our own doing, but because we came up against a really special team'.

Liverpool's players console themselves at Anfield on Sunday, but Neville thinks they will be back next season Liverpool's players console themselves at Anfield on Sunday, but Neville thinks they will be back next season Liverpool's players console themselves at Anfield on Sunday, but Neville thinks they will be back next season

"I think it will be the latter. When I think of the Barcelona team that Guardiola had eight, nine years ago, it stopped Manchester United winning three Champions League titles just because they were so good.

"And Liverpool can just look at it from a philosophical view that they came up against a great side. Liverpool this year are far better than I imagined, they have done far more than I ever imagined, I never thought that that squad was capable of mounting a challenge for the title like they have and a Champions League.

Incredible credit to them [Liverpool], they played like champions all season, they have performed like a champion team

Gary Neville

"I thought they would fall in the last month, incredible credit to them, they played like champions all season, they have performed like a champion team. They have fallen short, they have not won it and it will not help them."

Sky Sports Racing Selector

Select 7 winners for your chance to win £1,000

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Top 10 trends of the season

Mon, 05/13/2019 - 11:00
Adam Smith

Data and Analysis @datasmith101

Leaders, goals, attacking full-backs, transfer spending, European ventures and much more...

Last Updated: 13/05/19 11:50am

As the world takes a breath after a scintillating Premier League campaign reached its finale on Sunday, we reveal the top 10 trends that shaped the season.

The tightest title race?

Just one point divided champions Manchester City and runners-up Liverpool, making it the closest title race since Sergio Aguero's late strike won City the title on goal difference over Manchester United in 2012.

During the entire Premier League era, the top two have only ever been separated by one point or fewer on six occasions: 1994/95, 1997/98, 1998/99, 2009/10, 2011,12 and this season.

City ran away with the title last season with a record-breaking 19-point lead over second place - but Liverpool achieved a remarkable improvement this season, collecting 22 more points than during their previous campaign City ran away with the title last season with a record-breaking 19-point lead over second place - but Liverpool achieved a remarkable improvement this season, collecting 22 more points than during their previous campaign City ran away with the title last season with a record-breaking 19-point lead over second place - but Liverpool achieved a remarkable improvement this season, collecting 22 more points than during their previous campaign

But it would be safe to say, across the entire season, this title race was the tightest ever during the modern era - with City and Liverpool averaging only 1.6 points apart after matchdays since August.

Vincent Kompany lifts the Premier League trophy after winning the title with a 4-1 victory over Brighton Vincent Kompany lifts the Premier League trophy after winning the title with a 4-1 victory over Brighton Vincent Kompany lifts the Premier League trophy after winning the title with a 4-1 victory over Brighton

City actually trailed the Reds for longer, and sat 10 points shy of Liverpool in late December, while Jurgen Klopp's side never trailed City by more than five points.

The lead has changed a record 32 times atop the Premier League table this season The lead has changed a record 32 times atop the Premier League table this season The lead has changed a record 32 times atop the Premier League table this season

City maintain levels, Liverpool transformation

The final-day drama was a result of City maintaining breathtaking form, with their 98 points only two shy of their record-breaking 100 last time out - producing a slight dip in goals scored, but conceding fewer at the other end.

Liverpool ended the season on 97 points - a record haul for  Premier League runners-up Liverpool ended the season on 97 points - a record haul for  Premier League runners-up Liverpool ended the season on 97 points - a record haul for Premier League runners-up

But while City maintained their unprecedented levels from last term, Liverpool were a team transformed with 22 more points, five more goals and conceding 16 fewer, as the graphic below shows.

The win percentage of Premier League champions has reached new heights under Manchester City over the past two seasons The win percentage of Premier League champions has reached new heights under Manchester City over the past two seasons The win percentage of Premier League champions has reached new heights under Manchester City over the past two seasons Top two domination

While the title race was arguably the tightest ever, the distance between second and third was greater than in any other season, with Liverpool finishing 25 points ahead of Chelsea - trumping Manchester United's 19-point advantage over Arsenal in 2011/12.

And that gap was forged purely from the top two teams' superiority, with City and Liverpool collectively collecting 195 points - another Premier League record.

The gap to seventh

Manchester City, Liverpool, Chelsea, Tottenham, Arsenal and Manchester United have collectively earned the title of 'big six' in recent years, and that phrase was reinforced further this season.

Wolves ended the season nine points adrift from Manchester United - a gap between sixth and seventh that has remained almost identical for three seasons running now - having never previously lasted for more than one campaign.

The last time the 'big six' was dismantled was during Leicester's title-winning campaign in 2015/16, when Southampton finished sixth, and, as a result, both Chelsea and Liverpool missed out.

But the 'big six' has generally reigned supreme for some time now, with 54 out of 60 top-six places being shored up by this group over the past decade.

Wolves shored up seventh spot in the Premier League but failed to reduce the gap to sixth which has existed for three seasons now Wolves shored up seventh spot in the Premier League but failed to reduce the gap to sixth which has existed for three seasons now Wolves shored up seventh spot in the Premier League but failed to reduce the gap to sixth which has existed for three seasons now

Only Aston Villa (2009/10), Newcastle (2011/12), Everton (2012/13 and 2013/14), Leicester and Southampton (both 2015/16) have prevented complete dominance.

Leicester and Southampton were the last teams to dismantle the 'big six' back in 2015/16 Leicester and Southampton were the last teams to dismantle the 'big six' back in 2015/16 Leicester and Southampton were the last teams to dismantle the 'big six' back in 2015/16

The biggest ever gap between sixth and seventh was when West Ham finished 11 points behind Chelsea in 2001/02, but that disparity was slashed to just one point the following season.

As the graphic below shows, this season's top six all recorded above-average point totals - with the exception of Chelsea in third place.

Formation evolution

The 4-2-3-1 formation has been dominant for several seasons, with nearly half of teams lining up with the system in 2015/16.

But that lion share has declined season on season and now represents just 18 per cent, while 4-3-3 became the most used system this term.

Increasingly, teams are typically experimenting with different systems more frequently - resulting in no runaway favourite across the league, and a more diverse range being used.

Maurizio Sarri did not experiment with different systems - starting every game in a 4-3-3 formation this season Maurizio Sarri did not experiment with different systems - starting every game in a 4-3-3 formation this season Maurizio Sarri did not experiment with different systems - starting every game in a 4-3-3 formation this season

The graphic above clearly shows how 4-4-2 was popular during Leicester's title-winning campaign, while three-at-the-back formations were increasingly used during, and immediately after, Chelsea's success in 2016/17.

Rampaging full-backs

There has been a year-on-year increase for assists by full-backs in five of the past six seasons, with a whopping 135 created this term - a stark contrast to the 75 in 2013/14.

Liverpool's 23 assists by recognised full-backs were the driving force behind the trend spike - with that tally being almost twice as many as the next most productive team, Arsenal on 13.

James Milner also assisted two additional goals while filling in as a makeshift right-back - but the stats only include players whose primary position is at full-back James Milner also assisted two additional goals while filling in as a makeshift right-back - but the stats only include players whose primary position is at full-back James Milner also assisted two additional goals while filling in as a makeshift right-back - but the stats only include players whose primary position is at full-back

At the other end of the scale, Charlie Taylor was the only full-back at Burnley to notch an assist, while relegated duo Cardiff and Fulham both achieved only two all season.

All of the assists by Liverpool's primary full-backs came from Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson - with the former edging his team-mate after teeing up his 12th on the final day.

Man Utd's (brief) purple patch

Manchester United finished 2017/18 as runners-up but struggled at the start of this campaign. That poor form, coupled with fans' discontent at negative tactics, prompted the club to sack Jose Mourinho in mid-December.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was drafted in as interim manager and produced an incredible reversal in form, while restoring a positive, attacking style of play - but the bounce effect was short-lived.

Manchester United sacked Jose Mourinho in mid-December Manchester United sacked Jose Mourinho in mid-December Manchester United sacked Jose Mourinho in mid-December

As the graphic below shows, United hit their prime in mid-January, culminating in an extraordinary, against-the-odds win at Paris Saint-Germain - but their form has been in rapid decline since.

United capitulated in the final weeks, missing out on a top-four finish and ending the season with their lowest five-game average for points-per-game in two seasons - averaging at just 0.4 after their 2-0 defeat against Cardiff.

Manchester United's 2-0 defeat to Cardiff on the final day epitomised their underwhelming season Manchester United's 2-0 defeat to Cardiff on the final day epitomised their underwhelming season Manchester United's 2-0 defeat to Cardiff on the final day epitomised their underwhelming season Shots from range decline again

There have been year-on-year dips in the number of shots taken from outside the box since 2011/12, and the 3,644 this season is the lowest number of attempts since records began. Quite a decline from the 5,038 taken in 1992/93.

Harry Kane attempted 62 shots from outside the box last season (1.8 per 90 minutes), but only attempted 32 this term (1.2 per 90 minutes). Harry Kane attempted 62 shots from outside the box last season (1.8 per 90 minutes), but only attempted 32 this term (1.2 per 90 minutes). Harry Kane attempted 62 shots from outside the box last season (1.8 per 90 minutes), but only attempted 32 this term (1.2 per 90 minutes).

Despite the reluctance to fire shots from distance, players have never had a higher long-range conversion rate during the period - with 4.2 per cent of attempts from outside the box now resulting in goals.

Away wins at all-time high, draws in decline

This season produced the highest proportion of top-flight away wins since the Football League was founded in 1888, with the visitors claiming victory in 123 out of 380 games - equating to 33.68 per cent.

The graphic below shows how home advantage has been on the wane since the league was founded 127 years ago.

Home advantage failed to help Huddersfield, who won two games at home and scored just 10 goals at the John Smith's Stadium.

In contrast, only 71 games were drawn - the fewest ever during the Premier League era. That number represents just 18.7 per cent of games ending in a stalemate - the lowest proportion in England's top tier since 1931.

There were 35 successive Premier League games without a draw between March and April, while Spurs set a Premier League record after going 32 games without a stalemate - a run that began last season and ended in February.

Net transfer spending hits new heights

Transfer spending took a notable dip this season with Premier league clubs splashing 1.42bn on signing across both windows, nearly £500m less than in 2017/18 - but clubs recouped less from player sales, too.

Christian Pulisic was the most expensive signing this season and will join Chelsea this summer Christian Pulisic was the most expensive signing this season and will join Chelsea this summer Christian Pulisic was the most expensive signing this season and will join Chelsea this summer

Overall, the net expenditure on transfers actually increased for a third successive season, according to Sky Sports figures - totalling at £962m, compared with £796m the previous year.

PL clubs reign in Europe

It will be an all-English final in both the Champions League and Europa League competitions, an event that has never before happened in the same season.

In the Champions League or European Cup, there has only been one previous all-English final - when Manchester United defeated Chelsea in Moscow in 2008.

Manchester United won the last all-English Champions League final after beating Chelsea in Moscow Manchester United won the last all-English Champions League final after beating Chelsea in Moscow Manchester United won the last all-English Champions League final after beating Chelsea in Moscow

There has only ever been one all-English final in the Europa or UEFA Cup, in the first year of its existence all the way back in 1972 - when Spurs emerged victorious against Wolves across a two-legged affair.

Historic dominance in Europe

As the graphic below shows, Spain have been dominant finalists across both competitions in recent years, claiming three out of four spots in 2013/14 and 2015/16.

Italy enjoyed a decade-long period of success in the 1990s, achieving three out of four finalists on three occasions during that period, while Germany are the only other nation to shore up three places in a season, back in 1980.

This season has also seen England become the most dominant finalists across both competitions since 1972, with 37 teams competing for the trophy - one more than Italy and Spain.

City ran away with the title last season with a record-breaking 19-point lead over second place - but Liverpool achieved a remarkable improvement this season, collecting 22 more points than during their previous campaign City ran away with the title last season with a record-breaking 19-point lead over second place - but Liverpool achieved a remarkable improvement this season, collecting 22 more points than during their previous campaign City ran away with the title last season with a record-breaking 19-point lead over second place - but Liverpool achieved a remarkable improvement this season, collecting 22 more points than during their previous campaign Goals, goals, goals... Christian Eriksen's 75th-minute goal during Spurs' 2-2 draw against Everton took the total number of Premier League goals this season to a new high Christian Eriksen's 75th-minute goal during Spurs' 2-2 draw against Everton took the total number of Premier League goals this season to a new high Christian Eriksen's 75th-minute goal during Spurs' 2-2 draw against Everton took the total number of Premier League goals this season to a new high

This season produced 1,072 goals, the highest total in a 38-game Premier League season - surpassing the previous high of 1,066 set in 2011/12.

So, after another record-breaking year of top-flight football, who knows what next season will deliver?

If reading on skysports.com, comment below to get involved in the debate, but please adhere to our House Rules. If you wish to report any comment, simply click on the down arrow next to the offending comment and click 'Report'.

Play Super 6

Predict 6 correct scores for your chance to win £250K.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Mane stars but Liverpool win in vain

Sun, 05/12/2019 - 16:45
Highlights and report as Man City's 4-1 win at Brighton means Liverpool finish second with a record 97 points By Gerard Brand at Anfield

Last Updated: 12/05/19 8:22pm

2:56 Highlights from Liverpool's win over Wolves in the Premier League. Highlights from Liverpool's win over Wolves in the Premier League.

Sadio Mane scored a double but Liverpool's 2-0 victory over Wolves was in vain as they fell just a point short of Manchester City after a pulsating Premier League title race.

City's 4-1 win at Brighton means they retain the title ahead of Liverpool, whose 29-year wait for a top-flight title goes on despite a record tally of 97 points for a second-place side.

Needing a win and for City to drop points at Brighton, Liverpool took the lead through Mane's close-range finish (17), before a period of chaos and confusion at Anfield both before and after Glenn Murray put Brighton ahead.

Player ratings

Liverpool: Alisson (7), Alexander-Arnold (8), Van Dijk (7), Matip (7), Robertson (7), Wijnaldum (7), Henderson (7), Fabinho (7), Salah (6), Mane (8), Origi (6)

Subs: Milner (6), Gomez (5), Oxlade-Chamberlain (5)

Wolves: Rui Patricio (5), Doherty (6), Bennett (5), Coady (6), Boly (6), Jonny (6), Moutinho (6), Neves (6), Dendoncker (5), Jota (6), Jimenez (5)

Subs: Traore (5), Gibbs-White (5), Vinagre (5)

Man of the match: Sadio Mane

But goals from Sergio Aguero, Aymeric Laporte, Riyad Mahrez and Ilkay Gundogan put City in command, while at Anfield, Liverpool were fending off a dogged Wolves, who should have equalised through Matt Doherty and Diogo Jota.

Mane celebrates his opener Mane celebrates his opener Mane celebrates his opener

Mane headed home a second late on (81) to wrap up a victory, and the home fans gave Liverpool a huge ovation at full time as attention now turns to the Champions League final against Tottenham on June 1. Wolves finish seventh, meaning they will play in Europa League qualifying from July 26 if Manchester City win the FA Cup final on Saturday against Watford.

Liverpool were ahead following an untidy opening quarter of an hour as Trent Alexander-Arnold paced down the right before seeing his deflected cut-back fall into the path of Mane, and the Senegalese forward made no mistake to strike past Rui Patricio.

Liverpool were top, and after Andrew Robertson stung the hands of Rui Patricio from range, there was 21 minutes of bedlam at Anfield. First, misinformation of a Brighton goal saw Anfield celebrating prematurely, before Murray did indeed Brighton ahead, prompting pandemonium in the stadium.

But it did not last long as Aguero and then Laporte put City in command, and it could have been even worse for Liverpool had Matt Doherty's effort from the right of the box not hit the bar and gone over Alisson's goal.

Wolves pushed for a leveller, but Anfield was flattened by a goal elsewhere as Mahrez put City 3-1 up on the south coast, as Divock Origi saw a gilt-edged chance blocked superbly by Conor Coady.

Jota saw a one-on-one chance denied by Alisson at the other end, but Liverpool put the game to bed just after City had done the same through Gundogan's free-kick, as Mane got on the end of another Alexander-Arnold delivery to head in from close range.

Mane finished the season on 22 goals, sharing the top spot in the Premier League top scorer charts with team-mate Mo Salah and Arsenal's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, while Alexander-Arnold's 13 assists is the most by a defender in Premier League history.

⚽️ Aubameyang
⚽️ Mane
⚽️ Salah

It is a three-way tie for the Premier League Golden Boot

— Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) May 12, 2019

Virgil van Dijk headed an Alexander-Arnold corner against the bar moments later, but it ended 2-0 as an unforgettable domestic season ended without the ultimate domestic prize for Jurgen Klopp's side.

Analysis: Title gone but Liverpool hope lives on

Liverpool could not have done more to win this Premier League title and this team can grow. was tough for the Anfield crowd to take but these supporters have every reason to believe in Jurgen Klopp's team, writes Adam Bate.

Klopp: This is just the first step

"People might say we could have done this or that but not really, I don't think [we could have done any more]. City were lucky in moments, we were lucky in moments. It was about staying in the race and believing and that's what we did.

2:18 Liverpool's Jurgen Klopp says that this season is the first step for his squad Liverpool's Jurgen Klopp says that this season is the first step for his squad

"When your opponent is City, it's difficult. They couldn't get rid of us and we couldn't get rid of them. Being second in the Premier League is not what I wanted but we have to see it as the first step for this team. We have three weeks to prepare for the Champions League final - let's give it a go."

Opta stats
  • Liverpool became the first team in top-flight history to win as many as 30 games and 97 points in a season and not win the title.
  • No side has ever previously lost just one game in a top-flight season and not won the title - the previous record was also held by Liverpool in the 2008/09 season (two defeats, finished 2nd).
  • Liverpool's tally of 97 points would have been enough to win the Premier League in all but one of the previous 26 seasons of the competition (2017/18).
  • Wolves have ended the season in 7th position - the highest by a newly-promoted side in the Premier League since Ipswich Town finished 5th in 2000/01.
Man of the match - Sadio Mane

Mane continued his fantastic finish to the season with both goals, securing a share of the Golden Boot award in the process. He didn't have many other sights of goal but was clinical with the two chances that came his way.

What's next?

Liverpool go to Madrid for the Champions League final against Tottenham on June 1, kick-off at 8pm. Here's how you can follow the match on Sky Sports.

Play Super 6

Predict 6 correct scores for your chance to win £250K.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Premier League set for final act

Sat, 05/11/2019 - 22:00
Manchester City's trip to Brighton is live on Sky Sports Main Event from 2.30pm, while Liverpool vs Wolves at Anfield is live on Sky Sports Premier League from 2pm on Sunday, May 12. Kick-off for both games is at 3pm

Last Updated: 12/05/19 11:44am

2:08 Will Liverpool or Manchester City win the title? Will Liverpool or Manchester City win the title?

It all comes down to this. After 37 games over 10 gruelling months of a memorable and truly epic season, just one point separates leaders Manchester City and second-placed Liverpool going into the final round of Premier League fixtures on Sunday afternoon.

Pep Guardiola's champions travel to the south coast to take on a Brighton side now safe from relegation, looking for the win to guarantee them retaining the title they won by amassing 100 points last season.

Meanwhile, Champions League finalists Liverpool host high-flying Wolves at Anfield knowing that nothing but a victory will do if they are to stand any chance of winning a first top-flight title for 29 years.

Liverpool vs Wolves

May 12, 2019, 2:00pm

Live on

So, either way we are in store for a fascinating and potentially nerve-shredding afternoon of football and one that will conclude with either City or Liverpool being crowned Premier League champions. And what is more, you can follow it all on Sky Sports.

But before all that, there is plenty for you to get stuck into as we set the scene for the first final-day showdown since these very same sides also took the 2013-14 campaign all the way down to the wire.

Brighton vs Man City

May 12, 2019, 2:30pm

Live on

What the rival managers have said 0:52

Guardiola says Manchester City players are thriving on the pressure of challenging for back-to-back Premier League titles.

1:15

Jurgen Klopp expects Liverpool's rivals to "strike back" next season and says the club must maintain their consistency if they are to continue to challenge for honours.

Q&A: Pep vs Klopp 1:38

Guardiola and Klopp answer questions about the season ahead of the final day of the Premier League on Sunday.

All the essential stats for the Final Day

The title race goes down to the wire on Sunday as Manchester City and Liverpool battle to be crowned champions and we've picked five essential stats ahead of the blockbuster finale...

The star men on show 1:46

Virgil van Dijk has refused to give up hope of crowning Liverpool's "fantastic" season with the Premier League title at Anfield on Sunday.

1:17

What goes through the minds of players on the cusp of Premier League glory? Vincent Kompany outlines his final-day formula for title success.

Who is fit and who misses out?

Liverpool hope to have Mohamed Salah, Andrew Robertson and Jordan Henderson available against Wolves.

Liverpool provisional squad

Becker, Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Van Dijk, Robertson, Wijnaldum, Fabinho, Milner, Salah, Mane, Origi, Gomez, Moreno, Lovren, Henderson, Shaqiri, Sturridge, Brewster

Robertson and Henderson suffered knocks during the remarkable 4-0 comeback win over Barcelona on Tuesday, while Salah did not feature in the match after suffering a head injury against Newcastle last weekend.

Jurgen Klopp said all three could feature, although Roberto Firmino remains sidelined by a muscle strain.

Man City provisional squad

Ederson, Muric, Walker, Danilo, Stones, Otamendi, Laporte, Kompany, Mendy, Zinchenko, Delph, Gundogan, D Silva, B Silva, De Bruyne, Sterling, Sane, Mahrez, Foden, Aguero, Jesus

As for the champions, Kevin De Bruyne could return having missed City's last three games with a hamstring injury. However, Fernandinho is still out with a knee injury.

Kevin De Bruyne could be fit for Manchester City's title decider against Brighton on Sunday after three weeks out, says Pep Guardiola Kevin De Bruyne could be fit for Manchester City's title decider against Brighton on Sunday after three weeks out, says Pep Guardiola Kevin De Bruyne could be fit for Manchester City's title decider against Brighton on Sunday after three weeks out, says Pep Guardiola Race for the Golden Boot Who will win the Premier League Golden Boot? Who will win the Premier League Golden Boot? Who will win the Premier League Golden Boot?

Five players are in contention to land the Golden Boot - we look at the respective run-ins and stats, and ask the experts for a tip.

What has Paul Merson predicted?

I just can't see Man City not winning. Nothing shocks me in football after the Champions League this week. But when you look at this week, the two teams who came back are very good teams, with very good players. Even though it was a miracle, people will say miracles happen, Brighton have a chance - they're not the same class as the players who did what they did this week.

They're grinding results out as well. At the start of the season they were wiping the floor with teams, now they're not but they're keeping clean sheets, being hard to beat and nicking goals. There was a bit of panic with Man City on Monday - no disrespect but Vincent Kompany's shot should have gone 50 yards over! But they should be fine.

PAUL PREDICTS: 0-3

What needs to happen to set up a Premier League play-off clash to win the title...

— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) May 12, 2019

If Man City go ahead early, Liverpool have got to just get this game out of their memory, get it out of the way. They might need to get in front early doors, but if Man City go 2-0 up, they've got to start thinking about the game in three weeks in my opinion. Wolves will be dangerous, but there's no place like Liverpool. It'll be a hard game for them, though.

PAUL PREDICTS: 2-1

Last time out...Man City 1-0 Leicester 3:00 Newcastle 2-3 Liverpool 2:48 How Jota became Wolves' main man

Diogo Jota has become the key player in an in-form Wolves team and the man Liverpool need to watch out for on Sunday, writes Adam Bate.

Who the Pundits think will winRedknapp: Expect the unexpected 2:26 Le Tissier: Can't see City dropping pointsTwo trophies at the ready

There will be Premier League trophies at Anfield and at Brighton on Sunday, in readiness for either Manchester City or Liverpool being crowned champions.

The men standing in Liverpool and City's wayNuno: We'll rise for Liverpool clash 0:41

Nuno Espirito Santo says Wolves are desperate to beat Liverpool on the final day of the season, even with seventh place in the Premier League already secured.

Hughton: We'll go all out to beat City 1:44

Chris Hughton says his Brighton side will respect the competition of the Premier League when they host Manchester City on Sunday.

What are the odds?

Remember, no team in the competition's history has ever lost the leadership of the Premier League on the final day of the season. In fact, the last side to do so was actually Liverpool, whose 2-0 loss at home to Arsenal saw Kenny Dalglish's men surrender the championship to the Gunners in the final fixture of the 1988-89 campaign.

Play Super 6

Predict 6 correct scores for your chance to win £250K.

Have your say... Title race final day live on Sky Sports

The last act of The Run In will be shown live on Sky Sports with Manchester City and Liverpool's final matches to be broadcast live on Sunday.

Champions City will start the day a point ahead of Liverpool following their nervy win over Leicester on Monday Night Football.

And you can follow all the action live on Sky Sports as we bring you both Liverpool and Manchester City's final games on Sunday May 12.

City face Brighton at the Amex Stadium (Sky Sports Main Event) with the Seagulls already assured of their Premier League safety, while Liverpool host Wolves at Anfield (Sky Sports Premier League.)

Both games will kick-off at 3pm.

Manchester City's trip to Brighton is live on Sky Sports Main Event from 2.30pm, while Liverpool vs Wolves at Anfield is live on Sky Sports Premier League from 2pm on Sunday, May 12. Kick-off for both games is at 3pm

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Will there be a final-day twist?

Sat, 05/11/2019 - 16:50
Brighton vs Man City and Liverpool vs Wolves are live on Sky Sports Premier League & Main Event from 2pm on Sunday; Kick-off for both games is at 3pm By Ben Grounds

Last Updated: 12/05/19 11:43am

Manchester City have regained the lead in the Premier League title race, but will there be a sting in the tail?

Pep Guardiola held up one finger to the crowd as he made his way around the pitch at the Etihad Stadium. After his side's pulsating 1-0 victory over Leicester on Monday Night Football, the Catalan signalled that nothing had been won.

2:08 With the Premier League season coming to a close who will end as Champions; Manchester City or Liverpool? With the Premier League season coming to a close who will end as Champions; Manchester City or Liverpool?

'One more game' came the message, and while Vincent Kompany's bolt from the blue had all the hallmarks of a defining moment in the title race, there is still work to be done.

1:01 Stephen Warnock believes Liverpool can take hope from the anxiety Manchester City showed in their victory over Leicester Stephen Warnock believes Liverpool can take hope from the anxiety Manchester City showed in their victory over Leicester

It was the 32nd time that the lead has changed hands, with Liverpool trailing City by one point heading into the final day of the season.

Brighton host Manchester City while Wolves are the visitors to Anfield, with both games live on Sky Sports. City have begun grinding out results. Guardiola has found another way of winning, with three 1-0 wins in their last four games.

With Chris Hughton's Seagulls now assured of their Premier League safety, what are the chances of an almighty shock at the Amex Stadium on Sunday?

Sky Bet odds

The bookmakers aren't giving Liverpool too much hope of becoming the first Premier League team to win the title having not started the final day in first place.

The Premier League has been won on the final day on seven previous occasions The Premier League has been won on the final day on seven previous occasions The Premier League has been won on the final day on seven previous occasions

The Reds were the last club to be usurped on the final day, famously deposed by Arsenal in losing 2-0 at Anfield in 1989.

Manchester City are heavy favourites to become the first side in a decade to defend their title.

Will City 'do a Devon Loch'?

Jamie Carragher could not resist comparing the position Manchester City now find themselves in to Devon Loch during the 1956 renewal of the Grand National when the horse owned by Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother fell on the final straight while leading.

But Carragher believes the clubs involved in this year's thrilling chase are relishing their roles as potential Kingmakers.

3:00 Highlights from Manchester City's 1-0 win over Leicester in the Premier League Highlights from Manchester City's 1-0 win over Leicester in the Premier League

He said: "You think of Burnley last week and Leicester; these teams are in limelight because they feel part of the title race.

"Their seasons are over in some ways, but those teams want to be remembered, not necessarily to say 'we stopped City' or 'we stopped Liverpool', but they become the story, in some ways.

"The majority of those teams are rarely in high pressured situations where people are talking about them, and the impact of a result they could have.

MNF Podcast: City top again after Kompany stunner

David Jones is joined by Jamie Carragher and Gary Neville to reflect on Manchester City's 1-0 win over Leicester at the Etihad Stadium.

"Leicester wanted a result, not to help Liverpool, like Newcastle on Saturday night. They looked desperate to be part of the title race and took it in a different direction.

"I think that Wolves and Brighton will show huge commitment at the weekend. As a player, you've got to put yourself in their position. The limelight's on them. They want to be remembered."

'City failing to win is 100/1'

Gary Neville has heaped praise on the two sides battling it out, highlighting the resilience, mental and physical toughness of those involved.

"It's a faultless title race this," he said. "It's unique what everyone's watching. I've never seen anything like it.

0:40 Former Manchester City striker Shaun Goater says Vincent Kompany is a man mountain, a rock and the best captain the club could ever want Former Manchester City striker Shaun Goater says Vincent Kompany is a man mountain, a rock and the best captain the club could ever want

"There's been suggestions at times that teams are going to roll over. Or that some team are going to do a favour there.

"Year on year, we hear that teams are on the beach, but that's not going to happen. We've not seen it this season at all. It's Brighton's last home game of the season, so they're going to give it their all.

"I think they'll fall short because of quality, but it won't be for doing Manchester City a favour. If City weren't to win on Sunday, it would be absolutely remarkable. It's a 100/1 chance."

How can Brighton stop City winning?

Carragher added: "It could be 0-0 at Brighton at half-time and Liverpool could be ahead. I was surprised to learn that it's been six in 10 games that City have been goalless at half-time.

"In my head, every time City play, they're 1-0 up after 10 minutes, so I was surprised to hear that. But I think the only way that City might not win the title is if they get a red card in the game.

Kyle Walker escaped a red card against Brighton in the FA Cup semi-final Kyle Walker escaped a red card against Brighton in the FA Cup semi-final Kyle Walker escaped a red card against Brighton in the FA Cup semi-final

"The problem with City now is you can't see anyone scoring against them. I don't see any game finishing 0-0 with City involved. With Brighton, you wonder how many set pieces they could get in and around the box. Could they get that high up the pitch?

"So the only thing I think that can stop City is if they get a red card and they go down to 10 men. That makes it more of a 50-50 game, but I expect both teams to win."

Neville added: "It's much more likely that Wolves will go to Anfield and get a point than it is that Brighton will stop City getting the three points."

'We'll attack them, and attack them to become champions'

Guardiola batted away suggestions his side had produced a "nervous performance", eulogising that what his players achieved in breaking down Leicester's resolute defence was "incredible".

City trailed Liverpool by seven points at the start of the year before facing Jurgen Klopp's side at the Etihad knowing that anything but a win would effectively end their hopes of retaining the title.

1:00 Pep Guardiola admits he didn't expect to his side to maintain such a high level this season, after winning the Premier League last term Pep Guardiola admits he didn't expect to his side to maintain such a high level this season, after winning the Premier League last term

But after beating Leicester, Guardiola said: "It's in our hands. We were seven points behind so not far away, we never gave up, we're still there. We won 13 games in a row and that's why we are in that position.

"Liverpool play right now without pressure because they know it is not in their hands, so it's easy to play in these kind of games.

"We have the pressure because we can lose as it is in our hands. But we deserve to be in that position and we will try it [to win the title]. One more game left and we will try it.

Wolves are guaranteed to finish seventh and will look to end Liverpool's hopes Wolves are guaranteed to finish seventh and will look to end Liverpool's hopes Wolves are guaranteed to finish seventh and will look to end Liverpool's hopes

"This game [against Leicester] was an important game and of course it was a victory, but we didn't win the title.

"We have two games to win two titles [the Premier League and FA Cup] or two games to lose two titles.

"Everybody is going to Brighton and we are going to make the extra effort to try to win, attack them and attack them and attack them, to become champions."

Title race final day live on Sky Sports

The last act of The Run In will be shown live on Sky Sports on a defining final day of the Premier League season.

Liverpool vs Wolves and Brighton vs Man City are live on Sky Sports on the final day Liverpool vs Wolves and Brighton vs Man City are live on Sky Sports on the final day Liverpool vs Wolves and Brighton vs Man City are live on Sky Sports on the final day

Manchester City's trip to Brighton and Liverpool's clash with Wolves at Anfield are live on Sky Sports Premier League & Main Event from 2pm on Sunday, May 12. Kick-off for both games is at 3pm.

Play Super 6

Predict 6 correct scores for your chance to win £250K.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Pages