Liverpool FC on Sky Sports

Subscribe to Liverpool FC on Sky Sports feed Liverpool FC on Sky Sports
Liverpool News
Updated: 6 hours 39 min ago

Liverpool considering Brewster sale

Tue, 09/08/2020 - 13:10
Aston Villa, Brighton, Newcastle and Sheffield United have expressed interest

Last Updated: 08/09/20 6:32pm

Rhian Brewster has made four senior appearances for Liverpool to date Rhian Brewster has made four senior appearances for Liverpool to date Rhian Brewster has made four senior appearances for Liverpool to date

Liverpool are considering allowing Rhian Brewster to leave on a permanent deal in this transfer window, with the possible protection of a buy-back clause.

Newcastle made an enquiry to see what Liverpool's plans were for the 20-year-old, who spent the second half of last season on loan at Swansea.

However, any subsequent offer from Newcastle would have been rejected, as Liverpool believe Brewster's opportunities at St James' Park would have been limited.

Up to six Premier League clubs have expressed an interest in the forward, with Aston Villa, Brighton and Sheffield United three of those clubs.

0:30 Rhian Brewster's second goal against Red Bull Salzburg was clinically dispatched from 20 yards out. See full highlights from the game on LFCTV, Sky channel 425. Rhian Brewster's second goal against Red Bull Salzburg was clinically dispatched from 20 yards out. See full highlights from the game on LFCTV, Sky channel 425.

However, Liverpool maintain no final decision on Brewster's Anfield future has yet been made.

Last month, Brewster made a substitute appearance in Liverpool's Community Shield defeat to Arsenal and missed the crucial penalty in the shoot-out.

Liverpool vs Leeds

September 12, 2020, 5:00pm

Live on

Brewster: A future star

Analysis by Sky Sports' EFL pundits Keith Andrews and Don Goodman:

Sky Sports assess Brewster's attributes and explain why the Liverpool striker, 20, is set to be a star of the future in English football.

"He just looks very comfortable and with the composure that he shows in front of goal, he is lethal," says Andrews. "His general build-up play maybe needs to be worked on but there's going to be aspects of every part of his game that slightly need to be worked on. The biggest thing he's got going for him is the fact that he's an instinctive finisher. He doesn't thrash at things, he's very composed and he has a knack for heading as well. He can't overpower 6ft 2in centre halves, he has to out-cute them. He has to get in between areas and he does that very well."

13:17 Sky Sports assess Rhian Brewster and explain why the striker on loan at Swansea from Liverpool is set to be a star of the future in English football Sky Sports assess Rhian Brewster and explain why the striker on loan at Swansea from Liverpool is set to be a star of the future in English football

And Goodman has been equally impressed, saying: "He's got this explosive burst of pace and he seems to have really good football intelligence, so his movement is very clever and, when I watch clips of him finishing, there's such a variety.

"I had a real good chat to [Swansea boss] Steve Cooper about him and the work ethic, he said, is right up there as one of his best attributes and that comes down to mentality. He's likeable, he's got a big heart and he's a bit of a joker, apparently. All the things that make you popular in the dressing room. He also said that he's confident in his own ability but without being too far because when that goes too far, it turns into arrogance."

Transfer Talk: Why Liverpool should sign Thiago

Thiago Alcantara would give the Liverpool midfield a creative spark, Melissa Reddy told the latest Transfer Talk podcast as she makes the case for his signing.

The Bayern Munich midfielder has been heavily linked with a move to Anfield after shining for the Bundesliga club in another successful season and is expected to move this summer.

Subscribe now on: Apple Podcasts | Google Podcasts | Spotify | Spreaker

But does Jurgen Klopp need another body in midfield? Reddy, senior football correspondent for The Independent, believes Thiago offers something different to the current options but admits a space would need to open up for him.

She told the Transfer Talk podcast: "Part of the job when you are at the top is to stay there and one of the ways to do that is to make sure you're evolving, reinventing yourself in certain respects while staying true to the fundamentals that got you to the pinnacle in the first place - and Thiago would do that. He is the anthesis of everything they have at the moment, which I think is the entire point."

What else do Liverpool need? 2:25 Speaking on the Transfer Talk podcast, Melissa Ruddy explains Liverpool's long-term transfer plan under Jurgen Klopp Speaking on the Transfer Talk podcast, Melissa Ruddy explains Liverpool's long-term transfer plan under Jurgen Klopp

There are a few potential transfers bubbling under the surface this summer, but Reddy believes Liverpool's transfer plans are also focused on the long term.

She said: "I know one of the key directives for Liverpool and their recruitment staff, they don't want a squad who has aged together. Development and shared experiences is important, but they don't want to find themselves in the same situation that Barcelona are in, for example, where you're leaving yourself with your whole spine to replace with nothing coming through and no advancement.

"So getting that balance right of having those players who have been so pivotal to their silverware haul while also thinking of the future, that's very big for them.

Transfer Centre LIVE!

All the latest news, analysis and rumours from the window in one place.

The summer transfer window will run for 10 weeks from July 27 and close at 11pm on October 5.

A domestic-only window for trades between the Premier League and EFL then runs from October 5 and closes on Friday, October 16 at 5pm.

Follow all the news and analysis on Sky Sports News and across Sky Sports' digital platforms, including with our dedicated Transfer Centre blog.

Sky Sports Fantasy Football is back!

Another year, another £50,000 jackpot on the line. Sky Sports Fantasy Football makes its return for the 2020/21 season.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Carabao Cup draw: Man City to face Bournemouth or Palace

Sun, 09/06/2020 - 12:07
Leicester City to face Arsenal in third round; Manchester United away to Reading or Luton Town; Bradford City or Lincoln host Liverpool

Last Updated: 06/09/20 9:47pm

Pep Guardiola and Manchester City have won three successive Carabao Cups Pep Guardiola and Manchester City have won three successive Carabao Cups Pep Guardiola and Manchester City have won three successive Carabao Cups

Manchester City will begin their quest for a record-equalling eighth Carabao Cup with a third-round tie against Bournemouth or Crystal Palace, while Leicester City face Arsenal at the same stage.

Pep Guardiola's side, who won this trophy for the third successive year last March, enter at the third-round due to their European commitments.

Last season's runners-up Aston Villa are away to Burton in the second round, while Burnley host Sheffield United in an all-Premier League tie.

There is a West Midlands derby between Wolves and Stoke City, West Ham host London rivals Charlton, while Brighton take on Portsmouth in an eye-catching South Coast clash.

EFL newcomers Harrogate face a dream trip to Premier League West Brom while fellow Sky Bet League Two side Salford also have a Premier League challenge against Everton at Goodison Park.

In the third round, Premier League champions Liverpool will travel to Bradford City or Lincoln, while Manchester United are away to Reading or Luton.

The only confirmed all-Premier League tie in the third round sees Leicester host Arsenal, with Tottenham away to Leyton Orient or Plymouth.

Second-round ties are to be played the week commencing September 14 with third-round matches the following week.

Carabao Cup second round

North draw

  • Burnley vs Sheffield United
  • Burton Albion vs Aston Villa
  • Bradford City vs Lincoln City
  • Leeds United vs Hull City
  • Everton vs Salford City
  • Wolverhampton Wanderers vs Stoke City
  • Rochdale vs Sheffield Wednesday
  • West Bromwich Albion vs Harrogate Town
  • Middlesbrough vs Barnsley
  • Derby County vs Preston North End
  • Newcastle United vs Blackburn Rovers
  • Morecambe vs Oldham Athletic
  • Fleetwood Town vs Port Vale

South draw

  • West Ham United vs Charlton Athletic
  • Ipswich Town vs Fulham
  • Oxford United vs Watford
  • AFC Bournemouth vs Crystal Palace
  • Leyton Orient vs Plymouth Argyle
  • Southampton vs Brentford
  • Bristol City vs Northampton Town
  • Reading vs Luton Town
  • Millwall v Cheltenham Town
  • Brighton & Hove Albion vs Portsmouth
  • Newport County vs Cambridge United
  • Gillingham vs Coventry City
Carabao Cup third round
  • Bradford or Lincoln vs Liverpool
  • Bristol City or Northampton vs Burton or Aston Villa
  • Morecambe or Oldham vs Newcastle or Blackburn
  • Reading or Luton vs Manchester United
  • Derby or Preston vs Brighton or Portsmouth
  • Ipswich or Fulham vs Rochdale or Sheffield Wednesday
  • Manchester City vs Bournemouth or Crystal Palace
  • Millwall or Cheltenham Town vs Burnley or Sheffield United
  • Chelsea vs Middlesbrough or Barnsley
  • Wolves or Stoke vs Gillingham or Coventry
  • Leicester City vs Arsenal
  • West Brom or Harrogate vs Southampton or Brentford
  • Newport or Cambridge vs Oxford or Watford
  • Fleetwood or Port Vale vs Everton or Salford
  • Leyton Orient or Plymouth vs Tottenham Hotspur
  • West Ham or Charlton vs Leeds or Hull
Sky Sports Fantasy Football is back!

Another year, another £50,000 jackpot on the line. Sky Sports Fantasy Football makes its return for the 2020/21 season.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Transfer Talk: Why Liverpool should sign Thiago

Sun, 09/06/2020 - 11:45
Georginio Wijnaldum's links to Barcelona and what else Liverpool might need are also analysed as The Independent’s Melissa Reddy joins Pete Graves and Dharmesh Sheth on the latest Transfer Talk podcast

Last Updated: 06/09/20 5:42pm

Thiago Alcantara has been linked with Liverpool, but what would he bring to the team? Thiago Alcantara has been linked with Liverpool, but what would he bring to the team? Thiago Alcantara has been linked with Liverpool, but what would he bring to the team?

Thiago Alcantara would give the Liverpool midfield a creative spark, Melissa Reddy told the latest Transfer Talk podcast as she makes the case for his signing.

The Bayern Munich midfielder has been heavily linked with a move to Anfield after shining for the Bundesliga club in another successful season and is expected to move this summer.

But does Jurgen Klopp need another body in midfield? Reddy, senior football correspondent for The Independent, believes Thiago offers something different to the current options but admits a space would need to open up for him.

Subscribe now on: Apple Podcasts | Google Podcasts | Spotify | Spreaker

She told the Transfer Talk podcast: "Part of the job when you are at the top is to stay there and one of the ways to do that is to make sure you're evolving, reinventing yourself in certain respects while staying true to the fundamentals that got you to the pinnacle in the first place - and Thiago would do that. He is the anthesis of everything they have at the moment, which I think is the entire point.

"He's so progressive on the ball, pressure resistant and against deep defences especially, he would open them, with his incredible range of passing with both feet. While it's true that Liverpool largely funnel all their play through their full-backs, who are the creative heartbeat of the side, they know that clubs are trying to deny them that avenue. They're working really hard to put pressure on the full-backs to funnel all their play inside.

"Liverpool's midfield is incredibly industrious, tactically astute and their job really is to cover the areas when the full-backs go and are left vacant to make sure they're offering protection, but if you can have somebody in the midfield as well who can function in that creative capacity, it makes sense to do it.

"Thiago is an incredible thinker of the game as well, when he talks about the art of passing. He was schooled at two clubs [Barcelona and Bayern] where the pressure and expectation is so much, so moving to a club where that's also the case wouldn't really hamper him too much.

1:47 Here's a look at some of the long-range passing skills Liverpool fans could enjoy if Thiago were to join the club Here's a look at some of the long-range passing skills Liverpool fans could enjoy if Thiago were to join the club

"But in essence, when you look at Liverpool's midfield, they're already struggling to give everyone a fair crack at appearances and it is their most well-stocked area. For Jurgen, the biggest thing is squad harmony. He thinks a big reason they are where they are is, yes the evolution of the team and being able to win in different ways, but that's possible because of the squad harmony, the way the group get along and he's very conscious of keeping that, adding to the group but not destabilising that harmony.

"Interestingly with Thiago, Georginio Wijnaldum is in the exact same position in terms of having a year left on his contract to run and Barcelona under Ronald Koeman want Wijanldum. There has been no secret of that.

"I don't think it is impossible to imagine a scenario where Barcelona move for Wijanldum, freeing up Liverpool to move for Thiago or if both clubs think 'the window ends in October, that's not too far from January' where a pre-contract can be agreed and both clubs go down that route. At the moment, Liverpool are comfortable, patient and relaxed to see what happens.

1:07 Jamie Redknapp believes Thiago would add a different dimension to Liverpool's midfield if he was to join from Bayern Munich Jamie Redknapp believes Thiago would add a different dimension to Liverpool's midfield if he was to join from Bayern Munich

"When you speak to the club, they say he's a spectacular player, the club likes him a lot but look at the places in midfield, they have to try and keep everyone happy. If a vacancy opens up, I'm sure they'll go for Thiago. I know there is a lot of anxiety among the fanbase as the club have done so little but there's a long way to go in the window still."

Sheth: Wijnaldum has interesting decision to make Ronald Koeman and Gini Wijnaldum already know each other well Ronald Koeman and Gini Wijnaldum already know each other well Ronald Koeman and Gini Wijnaldum already know each other well

Another transfer eye is being kept on Wijnaldum, with new Barcelona boss Koeman - who coached the midfielder with the Netherlands - wanting him to play pivotal role in his rebuilding project at the Nou Camp.

But with plenty of turmoil at Barcelona in recent weeks, Sky Sports News reporter Dharmesh Sheth says Wijnaldum must be wary of the upcoming elections at the club.

He told the Transfer Talk podcast: "Obviously there is a match with the connections to the Dutch squad, but one thing I think Wijnaldum would have to think about, if he was to go to Barcelona, is those presidential elections.

"If he is joining because Koeman is there, there's no guarantee the manager will be there for the entire season. If (Josep Maria) Bartomeu loses those presidential elections and Victor Font is the favourite to win, Xavi is straight in and Koeman's out. Where does that then leave Wijanldum? Unless Xavi likes him.

"It's a real interesting decision that Wijnaldum will have to make and Liverpool as well because there's nothing stopping Wijnaldum saying 'I'm happy here, if you're not going to give me a new contract, I'll assess my options next summer when I can go for free'."

Liverpool vs Leeds

September 12, 2020, 5:00pm

Live on

Reddy added: "I don't think Liverpool would mind losing Wijnaldum on a free if that's the case, we've seen it before. They will think for the outlay they've spent on him to get him from Newcastle and for what he's delivered to the club in terms of tactical dexterity, he's played pretty much everywhere apart from in goal for Liverpool.

"They've secured trophies with him and he's been part of the senior players committee so a real leader in the dressing room. I think they say 'he's given us great service, it doesn't matter if we don't get a transfer fee for him'."

What else do Liverpool need? 2:25 Senior football writer Melissa Ruddy explains Liverpool's long-term transfer plan under Jurgen Klopp Senior football writer Melissa Ruddy explains Liverpool's long-term transfer plan under Jurgen Klopp

There are a few potential transfers bubbling under the surface this summer, but Reddy believes Liverpool's transfer plans are also focused on the long term.

She said: "I know one of the key directives for Liverpool and their recruitment staff, they don't want a squad who has aged together. Development and shared experiences is important, but they don't want to find themselves in the same situation that Barcelona are in, for example, where you're leaving yourself with your whole spine to replace with nothing coming through and no advancement.

"So getting that balance right of having those players who have been so pivotal to their silverware haul while also thinking of the future, that's very big for them.

0:45 Harvey Elliott scores as Liverpool come from behind to beat Blackpool 7-2 in a pre-season friendly. (Pictures from LFCTV. Full match highlights available on LFCTV) Harvey Elliott scores as Liverpool come from behind to beat Blackpool 7-2 in a pre-season friendly. (Pictures from LFCTV. Full match highlights available on LFCTV)

"The club have a lot of exciting young talent coming through, of which Harvey Elliott is probably the biggest. So it's making sure those youngsters are so well immersed in the culture and the demands that they can step up while also looking at the market, finding the next Sadio Mane, the next Mohamed Salah and they're already working on that.

"What is also huge for Liverpool is the front three. Given their ages, if one of them wants to look for a new challenge, Liverpool will wish them well, and get big fees for them because none of them have release clauses in their contracts, and will be very confident of replacing them.

Liverpool successfully reinvested the money they received for Philippe Coutinho Liverpool successfully reinvested the money they received for Philippe Coutinho Liverpool successfully reinvested the money they received for Philippe Coutinho

"If we look at the Philippe Coutinho example, they let him go when he was Liverpool's talisman and their best player. He went for £142m and they took that money, reinvested it in Alisson, Virgil van Dijk and Fabinho and they've gone and won trophies.

"I think there will be a lot of confidence that if any of their big hitters do walk out, eventually, that they're fully capable of replacing them."

Transfer Centre LIVE!

All the latest news, analysis and rumours from the window in one place.

The summer transfer window will run for 10 weeks from July 27 and close at 11pm on October 5.

A domestic-only window for trades between the Premier League and EFL then runs from October 5 and closes on Friday, October 16 at 5pm.

Follow all the news and analysis on Sky Sports News and across Sky Sports' digital platforms, including with our dedicated Transfer Centre blog.

Sky Sports Fantasy Football is back!

Another year, another £50,000 jackpot on the line. Sky Sports Fantasy Football makes its return for the 2020/21 season.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Friendlies: Liverpool hit seven after early scare

Sat, 09/05/2020 - 20:36
Tottenham lose at Watford, while Arsenal are beaten 3-2 by Aston Villa at the Emirates

Last Updated: 05/09/20 9:18pm

Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool beat Blackpool 7-2 at Anfield on Saturday Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool beat Blackpool 7-2 at Anfield on Saturday Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool beat Blackpool 7-2 at Anfield on Saturday

Liverpool fought back from 2-0 down to beat Blackpool 7-2 in a friendly at Anfield on Saturday.

In Liverpool's final pre-season clash, League One side Blackpool were ahead after 15 minutes through CJ Hamilton, before Jerry Yates doubled their lead from the spot.

Liverpool halved the deficit through Joel Matip's glancing header just before the break, and the champions hit two in two minutes after half-time through Sadio Mane's tap-in and Roberto Firmino, who got a clever touch on Takumi Minamino's effort.

Harvey Elliott came off the bench to score his first goal for the club, before Minamino netted a fifth for Liverpool, who were now in total control.

Divock Origi converted Curtis Jones' assist before Sepp van den Berg turned home from close-range from Elliott's cross to complete the rout.

Liverpool: Alisson, Hoever, Matip, Koumetio, Milner, Fabinho, Keita, Minamino, Mane, Salah, Firmino - Subs: Adrian, Karius, Jones, Origi, Phillips, Clarkson, Elliott, Van den Berg.

Elsewhere, Aston Villa beat Arsenal 3-2 at the Emirates thanks to goals from Douglas Luiz and Jacob Murphy (2), with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scoring twice for the Gunners.

0:31 Highlights of Everton's 2-0 victory against Preston in a pre-season friendly at Goodison Park. Highlights of Everton's 2-0 victory against Preston in a pre-season friendly at Goodison Park.

Everton were 2-0 winners over Preston at Goodison Park thanks to goals from Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Jonjoe Kenny.

Tottenham were beaten 2-1 at Watford, with Heung-Min Son scoring Spurs' only goal from the spot, while West Ham were beaten 5-3 by relegated Bournemouth at the London Stadium; Felipe Anderson and Jarrod Bowen (2) were scorers.

Crystal Palace drew 1-1 with Brondby at Selhurst Park, with Wilfried Zaha scoring, while Newcastle lost 1-0 at home to Stoke.

Burnley fielded two separate sides as they beat Hearts 4-1 and Mansfield Town 4-2, Leeds beat Pacos Ferreira 3-1, Leicester drew 1-1 with Blackburn, and Brighton drew 0-0 with West Brom at the Amex.

Sky Sports Fantasy Football is back!

Another year, another £50,000 jackpot on the line. Sky Sports Fantasy Football makes its return for the 2020/21 season.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Henderson battling to be fit for Liverpool's opener

Sat, 09/05/2020 - 19:01
Watch Liverpool vs Leeds live on Sky Sports Premier League on Saturday, September 12 from 5pm; Kick-off is at 5:30pm

Last Updated: 05/09/20 7:19pm

Jordan Henderson is recovering from a knee injury Jordan Henderson is recovering from a knee injury Jordan Henderson is recovering from a knee injury

Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson is facing a race to be fully fit for the Premier League champions' opening match against Leeds next weekend.

The England international missed the final four games of last season after sustaining a knee injury at Brighton in July and, although he started light training this week, he was left out of the squad for Saturday's friendly at home to Blackpool and will not return to full training until Tuesday.

"Obviously Hendo was desperate to play a few minutes today as well, but it makes no real sense because he had to do an important session today for him," manager Jurgen Klopp told liverpoolfc.com.

"If he would have played today, 10 minutes or so would have probably been OK but that makes no sense so that was not possible, but he trained in big parts of this week and will probably join full team training next Tuesday.

Liverpool vs Leeds

September 12, 2020, 5:00pm

Live on

"Timing-wise, not perfect that he cannot play today, but can train a few days later fully. But that's how it is.

"We will see how he develops, (there are) a few days until Leeds, how the boys come back from the national teams.

"A lot of open questions still, but a few hopefully we can answer today."

Klopp did have some good news on the injury front, however, with Joel Matip - who has not featured since injuring a foot in the first post-lockdown game against Everton back on June 21 - was able to start against the Seasiders at Anfield.

Liverpool battled back from two goals down against Blackpool to win 7-2.

Matip was among the goalscorers, with Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino, Harvey Elliott, Takumi Minamino, Divock Origi and Sepp van den Berg also finding the net.

Sky Sports Fantasy Football is back!

Another year, another £50,000 jackpot on the line. Sky Sports Fantasy Football makes its return for the 2020/21 season.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Liverpool, Man City dominate PFA Player of the Year shortlist

Fri, 09/04/2020 - 12:00
Four Liverpool players nominated along with Manchester City's Kevin De Bruyne and Raheem Sterling; Four Chelsea players on shortlist for Women's Player of the Year

Last Updated: 04/09/20 12:16pm

Virgil van Dijk, Kevin De Bruyne and Jordan Henderson are among the nominees Virgil van Dijk, Kevin De Bruyne and Jordan Henderson are among the nominees Virgil van Dijk, Kevin De Bruyne and Jordan Henderson are among the nominees

Premier League winners Liverpool have had four players nominated for the PFA Player of the Year award, with Trent Alexander-Arnold also included on the shortlist in the young player category.

Reds full-back Alexander-Arnold appears alongside Anfield team-mates Virgil van Dijk - last year's recipient - Jordan Henderson and Sadio Mane in the six-strong list of nominees for the main men's prize.

They are joined on the shortlist by Manchester City duo Kevin De Bruyne and Raheem Sterling.

Watch Liverpool v Blackpool live on LFCTV

See Liverpool back in action exclusively live on LFCTV. Find out more here

Trent Alexander-Arnold has also been nominated for the young player award Trent Alexander-Arnold has also been nominated for the young player award Trent Alexander-Arnold has also been nominated for the young player award

The Liverpool quartet have been rewarded for the roles they played in the club's first title success in 30 years, finishing 18 points clear of second-placed City.

England international Alexander-Arnold, 21, and Van Dijk played in all 38 league games, while Henderson captained the side impressively and Mane scored 22 goals in all competitions.

De Bruyne enhanced his reputation with a series of stunning individual displays for City, while England star Sterling scored 35 goals for club and country.

Alexander-Arnold is joined on the Young Player of the Year list - nominees had to be 21 or under on July 1, 2019 - by Manchester United pair Marcus Rashford and Mason Greenwood, Chelsea striker Tammy Abraham and club-mate Mason Mount, and Arsenal teenager Bukayo Saka.

Beth England, holder Vivianne Miedema and Sophie Ingle are nominated Beth England, holder Vivianne Miedema and Sophie Ingle are nominated Beth England, holder Vivianne Miedema and Sophie Ingle are nominated

Chelsea players dominate the candidates for the Women's Player of the Year category with Beth England, Sophie Ingle, Guro Reiten and Ji So-Yun all included.

Holder Vivianne Miedema and her Arsenal team-mate Kim Little complete the list.

The Blues narrowly won the Women's Super League title ahead of Manchester City on a points-per-game basis when last season was called to a halt because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Striker England scored 21 goals in all competitions playing ahead of midfielders Ingle, Reiten and Ji as the Blues claimed the title and the Continental League Cup.

Erin Cuthbert is in contention for Young Player of the Year Erin Cuthbert is in contention for Young Player of the Year Erin Cuthbert is in contention for Young Player of the Year

Team-mate Erin Cuthbert finds herself surrounded by Manchester-based players in the Young Player of the Year category, alongside City's Lauren Hemp, Chloe Kelly, Ellie Roebuck and Georgia Stanway and United's Lauren James.

The winners will be announced on Tuesday.

Men's PFA Players' Player of the Year nominees

Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool)

Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City)

Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool)

Jordan Henderson (Liverpool)

Sadio Mane (Liverpool)

Raheem Sterling (Manchester City)

Women's PFA Players' Player of the Year nominees

Beth England (Chelsea)

Sophie Ingle (Chelsea)

Kim Little (Arsenal)

Vivianne Miedema (Arsenal)

Guro Reiten (Chelsea)

Ji So-Yun (Chelsea)

Men's PFA Young Player of the Year nominees

Tammy Abraham (Chelsea)

Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool)

Mason Greenwood (Manchester United)

Mason Mount (Chelsea)

Marcus Rashford (Manchester United)

Bukayo Saka (Arsenal)

Women's PFA Young Player of the Year nominees

Erin Cuthbert (Chelsea)

Lauren Hemp (Manchester City)

Lauren James (Manchester United)

Chloe Kelly (Manchester City formerly Everton)

Ellie Roebuck (Manchester City)

Georgia Stanway (Manchester City)

Sky Sports Fantasy Football is back!

Another year, another £50,000 jackpot on the line. Sky Sports Fantasy Football makes its return for the 2020/21 season.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Redknapp: Thiago adds finesse to Liverpool

Fri, 09/04/2020 - 06:05
Jamie Redknapp

Football Expert & Columnist

Sky Sports pundit highlights two-fold impact Bayern Munich midfielder could have on Premier League champions

Last Updated: 04/09/20 7:49am

1:07 Jamie Redknapp believes Thiago Alacantara would add a different dimension to Liverpool's midfield if he was to join from Bayern Munich Jamie Redknapp believes Thiago Alacantara would add a different dimension to Liverpool's midfield if he was to join from Bayern Munich

Jamie Redknapp believes the signing of Thiago Alcantara could have a two-fold benefit for Liverpool and prove crucial to their Premier League title defence.

Liverpool ended their 30-year wait to be crowned champions in emphatic fashion last season, but Jurgen Klopp has been hesitant in strengthening his title-winning squad, with defender Kostas Tsimikas the only arrival so far ahead of next season's defence.

Bayern Munich midfielder Thiago has been strongly linked with a move to Anfield, with reports claiming the 29-year-old has made his mind up over an exit from the Allianz Arena.

Former Liverpool midfielder Redknapp labelled Thiago "one of the best midfielders in the world" who can deliver a different dimension to the Reds.

"We've often spoken about how good Liverpool's midfield are, how hard-working they are, but sometimes they maybe lack that bit of finesse and that little bit of quality," the Sky Sports pundit said.

Watch Liverpool v Blackpool live on LFCTV

See Liverpool back in action exclusively live on LFCTV. Find out more here.

"Thiago would give them something completely different, he's one of the best midfield players in the world. He dictates the play, plays at his own pace.

"Sometimes, especially when you go to tough places in the Premier League, you cannot beat teams by going 100 mph all the time, you need a little bit of finesse and for someone to do things differently.

Thiago Alcantara was influential as Bayern Munich were crowned Champions League winners in 2020 Thiago Alcantara was influential as Bayern Munich were crowned Champions League winners in 2020 Thiago Alcantara was influential as Bayern Munich were crowned Champions League winners in 2020

"Many years ago Liverpool had midfield players like Ronnie Whelan and Jan Molby who could just slow the game down and play at a tempo that suited them, Thiago could do that.

"We saw him in the Champions League final where he completely bossed the game, had so many touches of the ball and made the game look easy."

Redknapp emphasised the importance of champions staying ahead of their rivals, citing Liverpool's eras of dominance in previous decades.

He added: "Graeme Souness always talks about Liverpool's dominance in the '80s. The first thing they would do after winning the league would be to sign one or two players just to freshen things up and keep everyone on their toes. Sir Alex Ferguson certainly did that as well.

"I wouldn't necessarily say Liverpool have to go all in for Thiago, you've got to be careful in the transfer market.

"But Thiago would be a really good signing for Liverpool, and one who could give everybody a bit of a lift and make sure everybody knows there will be no resting on their laurels ahead of next season."

Analysis: Klopp planning midfield shake-up?

Sky Sports' Nick Wright:

'Thiago Alcantara is a playmaker of the highest order, a penetrative passer and someone who would add a new dimension to Liverpool's midfield. He would allow them to attack in a different way, perhaps even play in a different way...'

Read more from Nick Wright on Jurgen Klopp's possible plan for Liverpool's midfield.

Transfer Centre LIVE!

All the latest news, analysis and rumours from the window in one place.

The summer transfer window will run for 10 weeks from July 27 and close at 11pm on October 5.

A domestic-only window for trades between the Premier League and EFL then runs from October 5 and closes on Friday, October 16 at 5pm.

Follow all the news and analysis on Sky Sports News and across Sky Sports' digital platforms, including with our dedicated Transfer Centre blog.

Sky Sports Fantasy Football is back!

Another year, another £50,000 jackpot on the line. Sky Sports Fantasy Football makes its return for the 2020/21 season.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Klopp planning midfield shake-up?

Thu, 09/03/2020 - 13:30
Nick Wright

Comment and Analysis @nicholaspwright

Barcelona are chasing Georginio Wijnaldum this summer while Liverpool hope to sign Bayern Munich's Thiago Alcantara. Is Jurgen Klopp plotting a midfield shake-up? And what's behind it?

Last Updated: 04/09/20 8:39am

It has been a quiet transfer window for Liverpool so far. Improving a title-winning side is not easy. In fact, sticking with what you already have is sometimes the best policy. Last season's success is proof of that.

But as summer turns to autumn and the October 5 deadline draws closer, speculation is intensifying that changes are coming. Specifically, in midfield. Liverpool's pursuit of Thiago Alcantara reportedly continues. Suggestions from Barcelona are that Georginio Wijnaldum could be the man to make way.

Thiago's starring performance in Bayern Munich's Champions League final win over Paris Saint-Germain raised excitement levels on Merseyside about the prospect of his arrival at Anfield. But at the same time the uncertainty around Wijnaldum's future has caused some trepidation.

Georginio Wijnaldum joined Liverpool from Newcastle in 2016 Georginio Wijnaldum joined Liverpool from Newcastle in 2016 Georginio Wijnaldum joined Liverpool from Newcastle in 2016

Outside of Liverpool, Wijnaldum does not receive anything like as much acclaim as many of his team-mates. He even tends to be overshadowed by his fellow midfielders. Jordan Henderson is their leader, the FWA Footballer of the Year. Fabinho and Naby Keita were nearly twice as expensive.

But Wijnaldum is arguably more important than any of them.

Since his arrival from Newcastle in 2016, he has played more minutes than any other Liverpool player except Roberto Firmino and it is no coincidence.

Wijnaldum has only missed four Premier League fixtures in the last two seasons. During that time-frame, Liverpool's win rate in all competitions drops from 77 per cent to 54 per cent in games he does not start.

Wijnaldum's contribution on the pitch can be difficult to measure.

Watch Liverpool v Blackpool live on LFCTV

See Liverpool back in action exclusively live on LFCTV. Find out more here.

At Newcastle, and indeed in his first season at Liverpool, his value was most apparent in the stream of goals and assists he provided. He has had his moments since then - his double in last year's Champions League win over Barcelona will not be forgotten - but his overall numbers have dropped.

Wijnaldum plays further back now, on the left-hand side of a three-man midfield commonly described as workmanlike, and yet he does not rank highly for tackles or interceptions either.

Watch Wijnaldum play in this Liverpool side, however, and it soon becomes clear what he gives them - and why Klopp has previously described him as "the perfect midfielder".

If he does not make as many tackles as other players, it is only because he does not need to. Instead, Wijnaldum excels at putting himself in the right positions. When Andy Robertson bombs forward from left-back, he is there to provide cover behind him. When an attack breaks down in the final third, he is alert to the danger, shutting down passing lanes and preventing an opposition breakaway.

Wijnaldum boasts impressive resilience and immense stamina, allowing him to shuttle between his own box and the opposition's, covering more than 11km per game, contributing in both defence and attack, and exerting his influence with the ball as well as without it.

Indeed, while Wijnaldum is no longer a primary source of creativity for Liverpool, he remains one of their most technically skilled players. In fact, last season, his 91 per cent passing accuracy rate was the highest of any Liverpool player and the third-highest among Premier League midfielders behind only Manchester City pair Rodri and Ilkay Gundogan.

Even in Klopp's "heavy metal" Liverpool there is a need for composure, a need for someone who can knit the chaos together, and right now that someone is Wijnaldum. Klopp loves his ability to keep the ball in tight spaces. He feels the same way about his resistance to pressing.

The problem, of course, is that, if Liverpool do intend to buy Thiago, they must sell first, and Wijnaldum's contractual situation - he only has a year remaining on his current deal - coupled with the interest of Ronald Koeman at Barcelona, make him the most likely candidate for an exit.

Klopp will let him go reluctantly but, as Jamie Carragher recently put it on Sky Sports News: "Thiago would bring something different."

The Spain international is a playmaker of the highest order, a penetrative passer and someone who would add a new dimension to Liverpool's midfield. He would allow them to attack in a different way, perhaps even play in a different way. In addition to his imaginative distribution, he possesses outstanding dribbling ability.

He would also bring fresh impetus and plenty of excitement. Motivation has not been a problem for this Liverpool side, but there is a fine line between stability and going stale. Last year, it was about consolidation. This year, however, there is a feeling that more action is required.

1:47 Watch some of Thiago Alcantara's best long-range passes Watch some of Thiago Alcantara's best long-range passes

"The only worry for Liverpool is that the team hasn't changed too much," added Carragher. "Sometimes you just need a bit of freshness adding to it, mentally as much as anything."

Thiago, a serial trophy-winner whose leadership on the pitch was plain to see during last month's Champions League final, would certainly keep his Liverpool team-mates on their toes. It is also worth noting that, at Bayern, he has already shown he can thrive in a high-pressing team.

Thiago is rarely talked about for his off-the-ball work - in fact it is often framed as a weakness in his game - but what he lacks in outright athleticism, he makes up for in positional intelligence and work-rate.

Last season, in fact, he averaged more ball recoveries per 90 minutes than any of Liverpool's current midfielders. In the Bundesliga as a whole, he ranked second for possessions won in the middle third of the pitch.

Those numbers suggest that, as well as giving Liverpool something different, Thiago would fit in with principles Klopp has already put in place. It is why this midfield shake-up may be the best way to improve Liverpool - even if it means sacrificing a player as important as Wijnaldum.

Transfer Centre LIVE!

All the latest news, analysis and rumours from the window in one place.

The summer transfer window will run for 10 weeks from July 27 and close at 11pm on October 5.

A domestic-only window for trades between the Premier League and EFL then runs from October 5 and closes on Friday, October 16 at 5pm.

Follow all the news and analysis on Sky Sports News and across Sky Sports' digital platforms, including with our dedicated Transfer Centre blog.

Sky Sports Fantasy Football is back!

Another year, another £50,000 jackpot on the line. Sky Sports Fantasy Football makes its return for the 2020/21 season.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Koeman wants Wijnaldum in pivotal Barca role

Wed, 09/02/2020 - 14:16
Wijnaldum has just one year left on his Liverpool deal and talks over a new one are yet to take place

Last Updated: 02/09/20 2:19pm

Ronald Koeman and Gini Wijnaldum had a close working relationship during their time together with the Netherlands Ronald Koeman and Gini Wijnaldum had a close working relationship during their time together with the Netherlands Ronald Koeman and Gini Wijnaldum had a close working relationship during their time together with the Netherlands

Barcelona manager Ronald Koeman wants Liverpool's Georginio Wijnaldum to play a pivotal role in his rebuilding project at the Nou Camp.

Reports coming out of Barcelona which suggest that Wijnaldum has already agreed terms with the La Liga club are incorrect.

Wijnaldum, 29, is in the final year of his current deal and understood to be keen to stay at Anfield if agreement on an extension can be reached.

However, negotiations to extend that contract have yet to take place.

Liverpool manager Klopp insisted last week he was relaxed about his midfielder's contract situation and as yet there has been no contact between the two clubs.

Koeman worked closely with the Liverpool midfielder during his time as Netherlands boss.

Wijnaldum has made 186 appearances for Liverpool since arriving from Newcastle in 2016 Wijnaldum has made 186 appearances for Liverpool since arriving from Newcastle in 2016 Wijnaldum has made 186 appearances for Liverpool since arriving from Newcastle in 2016

Wijnaldum will be 30 in November. He moved to Liverpool from Newcastle United in a £25m deal in July 2016.

Since, he has scored 19 goals in 186 appearances under Jurgen Klopp.

Liverpool have been continually linked with Bayern Munich's Thiago Alcantara throughout the summer.

It is understood the Premier League champions would only look to bring in a midfielder if one were to depart.

Transfer window: Big deals, sagas, who needs what?

The summer transfer window has reached its halfway stage. Who's done business early? Who is still scrambling? Who could yet be on the move? And who needs what?

From the big deals done and those still on the boil, to the ongoing sagas and the offbeat moves you might missed, here is what you need to know about the transfer window so far as clubs step up their search for reinforcements before the big kick-off...

Read the full story here

Messi 360: The view from all sides

Messi stunned the football world by demanding to leave Barcelona. But his contract situation is complicated and this is just the beginning of what could be a lengthy, acrimonious and ultimately historic departure.

Ahead of a key meeting between Messi's father and the Barcelona board, we assess the situation to understand how it stands, and how it could develop, you have to view it from all sides...

Read the full story here

Premier League ins and outs

Who has your team signed? Who has been shipped out?

Check here for a comprehensive list of all the Premier League ins and outs from the 2020 summer transfer window, which opened on July 27 and closes on October 5.

Transfer Centre LIVE!

All the latest news, analysis and rumours from the window in one place.

The summer transfer window will run for 10 weeks from July 27 and close at 11pm on October 5.

A domestic-only window for trades between the Premier League and EFL then runs from October 5 and closes on Friday, October 16 at 5pm. Follow all the news and analysis on Sky Sports News and across Sky Sports' digital platforms, including with our dedicated Transfer Centre blog.

Sky Sports Fantasy Football is back!

Another year, another £50,000 jackpot on the line. Sky Sports Fantasy Football makes its return for the 2020/21 season.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Gomez: Liverpool mentally ready and hungrier than ever

Mon, 08/31/2020 - 09:40
Liverpool begin their Premier League title defence against newly-promoted Leeds on September 12, live on Sky Sports

Last Updated: 31/08/20 10:42am

Joe Gomez says Liverpool are mentally ready and "hungrier than ever" to meet the demands of the upcoming season.

The champions will kick off the 2020/21 Premier League season against newly-promoted Leeds, live on Sky Sports on September 12.

It will be a demanding campaign due to its late start as a result of the coronavirus pandemic disrupting last season, but Gomez says Jurgen Klopp will have the squad prepared for all upcoming challenges.

"More than anything, the gaffer instils in us that it's a mental battle more than physical half the time, so we'll be ready and we have a squad full of quality to rotate when needs be," Gomez told Liverpool's official website.

"The main thing is, mentally we are ready to go. And I think everyone is hungrier than ever."

Rhian Brewster's miss saw Liverpool beaten 5-4 on penalties after a 1-1 draw with Arsenal in the Community Shield on Saturday.

0:49 Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp says he takes responsibility for Rhian Brewster's penalty miss in their Community Shield loss to Arsenal Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp says he takes responsibility for Rhian Brewster's penalty miss in their Community Shield loss to Arsenal

Despite the result, Gomez says there were positives to take from the game - most notably the squad depth that allowed Klopp to make changes during the game that brought "a real bright spark".

"We created a fair few chances," said Gomez. "Obviously we relied on that spark and [Mohamed Salah] and [Takumi Minamino] provided that. There's positives to take, as well as things we can work on.

"The positive thing is now we obviously all split up [for international duty], but some will stay at Melwood and work in that short period before we come back for the start of the season to correct those minor details and hopefully be ready when the season starts.

"The quality coming off the bench showed that [the manager has the option to make tactical changes] and they brought a real bright spark into the game.

"That's going to be so important for us this year. We've always had such a strong squad but I think now more than ever and hopefully we can use that and I think everyone will play their part."

Sky Sports Fantasy Football is back!

Another year, another £50,000 jackpot on the line. Sky Sports Fantasy Football makes its return for the 2020/21 season.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Arteta confident Auba will commit to Arsenal

Sun, 08/30/2020 - 06:50
Ben Grounds

@Ben_Islington

Arsenal beat Liverpool 5-4 on penalties after a 1-1 draw in the Community Shield at Wembley

Last Updated: 30/08/20 9:43am

0:31 Mikel Arteta is confident Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will extend his Arsenal stay Mikel Arteta is confident Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will extend his Arsenal stay

Mikel Arteta remains positive over Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's future after his leading contribution in Arsenal's Community Shield shootout win over Liverpool.

Aubameyang fired the Gunners to their second Wembley triumph of the month as Arteta's side overcame the Premier League champions in the traditional season curtain-raiser.

August started with the Gabon forward inspiring the Gunners to a record 14th FA Cup win and ended with him wrapping up another morale-boosting victory.

Doubts remain over the striker's future with the 31-year-old's current contract set to expire in less than 12 months but talks are ongoing.

Arsenal celebrate winning the 2020 Community Shield against Liverpool Arsenal celebrate winning the 2020 Community Shield against Liverpool Arsenal celebrate winning the 2020 Community Shield against Liverpool

Arteta said: "I keep saying the same thing [on Aubameyang's future]. I try to do my job which is to convince him that he's at the right place and the right environment here to produce moments like he's done today and he did here just three weeks ago.

"I am very positive that he's going to sign. There are a lot of things that are involved in a contract deal and we're trying to solve them.

"I'm not worried [about the situation with Aubameyang]. We can only try to do as much as possible to convince the player or tell them what we think about him. We can put all the cards on the table to try to keep him here but afterwards it's down to the player and the agent to agree to that.

0:31 Arteta praises Ainsley Maitland-Niles for 'changing' after his man-of-the-match performance in their Community Shield win over Liverpool. Arteta praises Ainsley Maitland-Niles for 'changing' after his man-of-the-match performance in their Community Shield win over Liverpool.

"I think we've built a really good relationship between us and hopefully we can do it. Now, I am confident and I'm happy. I can see how he behaves every day and how much he works in training. It's a really good sign."

Aubameyang saw his fine curling effort cancelled out by Liverpool substitute Takumi Minamino as the match finished 1-1, but the Arsenal captain would seal another triumph by scoring the winning penalty in the subsequent shootout.

Arteta's next challenge is to convert these excellent one-off performances in cup games at Wembley into sustained success in a Premier League season.

The Gunners finished 43 points off Liverpool last campaign, and Arteta added: "That's a different task. We've beaten top teams consistently in the past two months but obviously after 10 months, the table showed last season that we are very, very far away.

"The gap is enormous and we have to try to close that gap as quickly as possible. In order to do that, there's a lot of aspects in our game that we still have to improve."

Klopp pleased as Minamino gets off mark Takumi Minamino equalises for Liverpool against Arsenal in the Community Shield Takumi Minamino equalises for Liverpool against Arsenal in the Community Shield Takumi Minamino equalises for Liverpool against Arsenal in the Community Shield

Rhian Brewster missed the only spot-kick as the Gunners won 5-4 on an afternoon that only underlined the need to get Aubameyang's new deal over the line.

It means Liverpool are the first side ever to lose the Community Shield on penalties in back-to-back years - but Jurgen Klopp played down the significance of the defeat.

Klopp said: "We were here to win the game, I hope that much was obvious. We didn't lose the game but we lost the competition. If we scored earlier that would've helped but there wasn't enough time.

"I was pleased with parts of the game. I know what situation we're in from a physical and technical point of view. Against a 5-4-1 and a side with a low block you need fresh legs. Now we have two weeks to prepare the new season.

Alisson was unable to get close to any of Arsenal's five converted penalties Alisson was unable to get close to any of Arsenal's five converted penalties Alisson was unable to get close to any of Arsenal's five converted penalties

"We had to get control back of the game and we had that in the second half. Arsenal didn't really create chances and we had to work hard to win back the ball. We had our two or three big moments that we didn't take and that's the reason for the result."

The difficulty facing Liverpool in strengthening a title-winning squad this summer has perhaps been underlined by Minamino's period of integration since his January move from Red Bull Salzburg.

But the Japanese forward got off the mark for his new team in Saturday's Community Shield shootout loss to Arsenal and Klopp was pleased with the player's overall contribution off the bench.

"It was big for him and big for us because it's the only thing he's lacked with us since he arrived. He hadn't scored but had been close in plenty of moments.

"The shape he's in is obviously good and I think everyone could see that when he came on. The goal is the logical step after performing well in pre-season. I'm very pleased for him."

'This lesson will not harm Brewster' Rhian Brewster lifts his spot-kick against the crossbar in the Community Shield Rhian Brewster lifts his spot-kick against the crossbar in the Community Shield Rhian Brewster lifts his spot-kick against the crossbar in the Community Shield

Klopp conceded that penalties shootouts are always a bit of a "lottery" as he congratulated Arsenal on their success despite feeling his side created enough chances to win the game.

The Liverpool boss turned to Brewster in the second minute of stoppage time, but his miss means a second successive Community Shield defeat on penalties ahead of the start of the new Premier League season.

Klopp added: "We all have to constantly learn and prove that we can deal with defeats. We lost the competition today as a team and he was part of that. He could've scored with the penalty or if somebody else would've missed it he would've had the same feeling. I was in the situation myself as a player and it's not nice, but there are bigger catastrophes. It's part of the deal.

0:34 Jurgen Klopp was encouraged by aspects of his side's performance Jurgen Klopp was encouraged by aspects of his side's performance

"With his shooting and finishing technique, I don't think there will ever be a goalkeeper in touch with the ball inside the area. But missing it as he did, it's possible because he takes full risk. I've never seen him miss a penalty before since we've worked together but it can happen.

"Dealing with defeats in football is always an important lesson and this will not harm him. We won't let it happen and if somebody is to blame it's me as I made the decision. I wanted him in that position as I know he's naturally a confident boy and he's a finisher. Usually he's really good."

What's next?

The international break takes place over the next 10 days before squads return ahead of the start of the new Premier League season on September 12.

Arsenal travel to face Fulham at 12.30pm later that day champions Liverpool host Leeds live on Sky Sports Premier League and Sky Sports Main Event. Coverage starts at 4.30pm with kick-off at 5.30pm.

Sky Sports Fantasy Football is back!

Another year, another £50,000 jackpot on the line. Sky Sports Fantasy Football makes its return for the 2020/21 season.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Community Shield ratings: Maitland-Niles hit, Salah miss

Sun, 08/30/2020 - 06:50
Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang show their worth to Arsenal again as Takumi Minamino impresses off the bench but Roberto Firmino struggles at Wembley By Matt Storey

Last Updated: 30/08/20 6:52am

Ainsley Maitland-Niles impressed at Wembley once more for Arsenal Ainsley Maitland-Niles impressed at Wembley once more for Arsenal Ainsley Maitland-Niles impressed at Wembley once more for Arsenal

Who stole the headlines and who was below-par as Arsenal beat Liverpool on penalties to lift the Community Shield?

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's fantastic early strike handed Arsenal the lead and they held on for a long time at Wembley, before sub Takumi Minamino took his chance and converted from close range to draw Liverpool level.

Joe Willock went closest to a winner but he couldn't direct a free header on target with five minutes left, not that it mattered in the long run.

Rhian Brewster, brought on in stoppage-time to take a penalty, was the only player to miss as he blasted his effort against the crossbar and Aubameyang netted the final pen to hand the Gunners a 5-4 victory from the spot.

Arsenal

Emiliano Martinez - 8

Not forced into a save before the break as Arsenal's defence kept Liverpool out, but twice came off his line quickly to deny Mane, either side of Minamino's strike. He has taken his chance between the sticks with both hands and is full of confidence.

Hector Bellerin - 7

Always a threat going forward and defended with discipline before going off. Will be disappointed at the amount of times Robertson was able to whip the ball into the box.

0:31 Arsenal head coach Mikel Arteta is confident Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will stay Arsenal head coach Mikel Arteta is confident Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will stay

David Luiz - 6

Gave the ball away whilst trying to play out from the back too often and did look nervous when doing that. Went about his defensive work well for the most part.

Rob Holding - 6

Tipped to head to Newcastle on loan and the centre-back showed at Wembley why they would want him. Dealt with Liverpool's potent front three well and only let Mane get in behind him once from a long Van Dijk ball.

Kieran Tierney - 7

Showed his usual desire to defend and clear balls from his box and also got forward lots, acting more as a left-back when Arsenal had the ball and a centre-back when they didn't. Tired as the game wore on but set for a big season.

Ainsley Maitland-Niles - 8

The youngster really grew into the game and was fantastic up against Mohamed Salah and Liverpool's forwards. It's tough to see why Arsenal are reportedly prepared to sell the youngster, with Wolves interested, and he keeps producing on the big stage.

Ainsley Maitland-Niles produced a disciplined display amid transfer speculation Ainsley Maitland-Niles produced a disciplined display amid transfer speculation Ainsley Maitland-Niles produced a disciplined display amid transfer speculation

Mohamed Elneny - 7

Probably never expected to pull on an Arsenal shirt again after spending a season on loan at Besiktas but produced a neat and tidy display. He used the ball sensibly when he had it and as part of the deep midfield duo, frustrated Liverpool.

Granit Xhaka - 7

Did the ugly parts of the game so well in the first half as he picked up loose balls and made important interceptions. A vocal presence in the middle too.

Bukayo Saka showed his quality again at Wembley Bukayo Saka showed his quality again at Wembley Bukayo Saka showed his quality again at Wembley

Bukayo Saka - 8

Seems to get better and better every time he plays. A great ball out to Aubameyang helped set up the goal and he should have had another assist when a perfectly-weighted pass led to Nketiah forcing Alisson into a smart save. Quieter after the break as Liverpool penned Arsenal inside their own half.

Eddie Nketiah - 6

Lively through the middle and showed Arteta enough prior to the break to suggest he should be used there regularly. May feel he should have beaten Alisson in the first half but he did little wrong with his low finish.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang - 8

Delivered with his very first involvement. Fantastic finish into the top corner to make it five goals in his last three games at Wembley. Aubameyang has so much quality in the final third and the Gunners absolutely have to keep him if they want to progress this season.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang celebrates his opening goal for Arsenal Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang celebrates his opening goal for Arsenal Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang celebrates his opening goal for Arsenal

Subs

Cedric Soares (for Bellerin, 58 minutes) - 6

Needless foul on Minamino gave Liverpool a dangerous free-kick and saw the ball rebound off him to set up Minamino's equaliser rather unfortunately.

Joe Willock (for Saka, 82 minutes) - N/A

Should have done better with a free header inside the box but could only direct it wide of the far post.

Reiss Nelson (for Nketiah, 82 minutes) - N/A

Showed good character to net from the spot.

Sead Kolasinac (for Tierney, 82 minutes) N/A

0:31 Arsenal head coach Mikel Arteta praises Ainsley Maitland-Niles for 'changing' after his man-of-the-match performance in their Community Shield win over Liverpool. Arsenal head coach Mikel Arteta praises Ainsley Maitland-Niles for 'changing' after his man-of-the-match performance in their Community Shield win over Liverpool. Liverpool

Alisson Becker - 7

There was little Alisson could do with Aubameyang's fine strike but he did make a fantastic low save to prevent Nketiah make it two shortly after. Aside from that, it was not a difficult afternoon for the Brazilian as Liverpool dominated the ball.

Alisson was unable to get close to any of Arsenal's five converted penalties Alisson was unable to get close to any of Arsenal's five converted penalties Alisson was unable to get close to any of Arsenal's five converted penalties

Neco Williams - 5

A nervous display from Williams who struggled with the fantastic Aubameyang. Gave the forward far too much space for the goal and was afforded little help from those ahead of him.

Joe Gomez - 6

Felt the wrath of Van Dijk when he gave the ball away early and didn't always look comfortable as Nketiah buzzed around him. Shifted to right-back in the second half and showed his versatility.

Virgil van Dijk - 7

Was needlessly offside as he converted Robertson's early free-kick. Went about his defensive work with his usual calm demeanour and sprayed a couple of lovely long balls, including one for Mane early in the second period.

Virgil van Dijk kicks the ball to score a goal which was disallowed Virgil van Dijk kicks the ball to score a goal which was disallowed Virgil van Dijk kicks the ball to score a goal which was disallowed

Andy Robertson - 7

Liverpool's best player in a surprisingly lacklustre first-half performance, Robertson put in eight crosses and they were all of the highest quality before the break. That nobody got on the end of them was not his fault and he carried that role on throughout the game.

Fabinho - 5

After a bright start, he gave the ball away twice in quick succession which seemed to dent his confidence. Moved back into centre-back but was not tested greatly.

James Milner - 6

The veteran was Liverpool's best midfielder while he was on the pitch, always busy and looking to find pockets off space when going forward.

Gigi Wijnaldum - 5

Uncharacteristically sloppy in possession during a poor first-half display and just failed to make any sort of mark on proceedings. Was a surprise to see Milner taken off rather than the Dutchman.

0:34 Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp was pleased with aspects of his team's display against Arsenal Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp was pleased with aspects of his team's display against Arsenal

Sadio Mane - 7

Twice found himself thwarted by Martinez racing off his line to smother his attempts. Maybe should have done better with the first but was by far the sharpest of Liverpool's much-vaunted front three.

Mohamed Salah - 5

Just could not involved in the game although it wasn't for a lack of trying. He had to leave the right flank to try and find opportunities as he tried to make an impact but Arsenal's stout defence kept him very quiet.

Takumi Minamino impressed for Liverpool Takumi Minamino impressed for Liverpool Takumi Minamino impressed for Liverpool

Roberto Firmino - 6

Anonymous in the first half, Firmino came close to equalising as he picked up the ball and tried his luck from outside the box shortly after the break. But he found service lacking and when the balls were played into the box, the Brazilian could not get on the end of them.

Subs

Takumi Minamino (for Williams, 59 minutes) - 8

A really bright appearance off the bench from Minamino and he notched his first Liverpool goal as a result. Great composure when the ball bounced his way to beat Martinez. Had tried his luck from range shortly after coming on with a shot that was easy for Martinez and cleverly won a free-kick off Soares before that strike too.

Naby Keita (for Milner, 59 minutes) - 6

Yet to live up to his price-tag and didn't have the same influence as his fellow sub Minamino.

Curtis Jones (for Firmino, 82 minutes) - N/A

A well-taken penalty when he had to score.

Rhian Brewster (for Wijnaldum, 92 minutes) - N/A

Missed the penalty after being brought on just to take it.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Auba secures Arsenal shootout Shield win

Sat, 08/29/2020 - 18:40

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored the decisive spot-kick as Arsenal overcame Premier League champions Liverpool on penalties to secure the Community Shield after a 1-1 draw at an overcast Wembley.

Aubameyang put the Gunners in front with a brilliant finish following a sweeping move to give Mikel Arteta's FA Cup holders the lead after just 12 minutes.

But Liverpool dominated the second period and deservedly levelled when substitute Takumi Minamino slotted his first goal since his January move from Red Bull Salzburg (73) to send the game to penalties.

Rhian Brewster was introduced in second-half stoppage time ahead of the shootout, but it was his miss which proved costly as his spot-kick clipped the bar, allowing Aubameyang to step up and seal victory for the Gunners.

Five perfect penalties seal victory for the Gunners at Wembley Image: Five perfect penalties seal victory for the Gunners at Wembley Player ratings

Arsenal: Martinez (8), Holding (6), Luiz (6), Tierney (7), Bellerin (7), Elneny (7), Xhaka (7), Maitland-Niles (8), Saka (8), Nketiah (6), Aubameyang (8).

Subs: Cedric (6), Nelson (n/a), Willock (n/a), Kolasinac (n/a).

Liverpool: Alisson (7), Williams (5), Gomez (6), van Dijk (7), Robertson (7), Milner (6), Fabinho (5), Wijnaldum (5), Salah (5), Firmino (6), Mane (7).

Subs: Keita (6), Jones (n/a), Minamino (8), Brewster (n/a).

Man of the match: Ainsley Maitland-Niles.

Feel-good factor continues for Arsenal

Less than a month after the FA Cup final was played, the traditional curtain-raiser took place in autumnal conditions as the Gunners laid down a marker in the driving rain with an eighth success in their last 10 Community Shield appearances.

Arteta described the timing of this glamorised friendly as "awkward" but there is never a bad time to be beating Liverpool. They overcame an early scare as Virgil Van Dijk correctly saw his goal ruled out for offside from Andrew Robertson's set-piece. But then we were reminded of the identity Arteta has brought to this Arsenal side.

Emi Martinez began a seven-pass move playing out from the back as the excellent Bukayo Saka found Aubameyang in his favoured left-side position. Kieran Tierney's overlap was enough to prevent Neco Williams from getting close as Arsenal's talisman cut onto his right boot and unleashed an unstoppable shot low into the bottom corner.

More on this story Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang opens the scoring for Arsenal against Liverpool in the Community Shield Image: Aubameyang opens the scoring for Arsenal against Liverpool in the Community Shield

It was a special strike followed by a special celebration as the Gabonese striker paid tribute to Chadwick Boseman, best known for playing Black Panther in the hit Marvel superhero franchise, who has died aged 43 after a four-year battle with colon cancer.

The margin of Arsenal's half-time lead might have been greater had Eddie Nketiah not been wasteful on two occasions - both set up by Saka. The first chance came at him after good play by Granit Xhaka in midfield as Alisson was alert to his low shot down to his left before Saka again found the young striker in space but his shot cleared the crossbar.

Team news

Virgil van Dijk was fit to start in defence as James Milner skippered Premier League champions Liverpool.The Netherlands defender came off in Tuesday's friendly against Red Bull Salzburg with a cut above his right eye but started as Jurgen Klopp named a strong-looking side at Wembley.

Emiliano Martinez got the nod ahead of Bernd Leno between the sticks for Arsenal, while Rob Holding started in defence despite reports that a loan move to Newcastle is imminent.

Liverpool had offered very little and had looked the side with just a week's training following a curtailed break. Klopp spoke bullishly this week of not setting out to "defend their Premier League title but to attack it" - and his side started the second period with real purpose as Roberto Firmino's curling shot veered just wide of Martinez's left-hand post after 51 minutes.

Takumi Minamino equalises for Liverpool against Arsenal in the Community Shield Image: Takumi Minamino equalises for Liverpool against Arsenal in the Community Shield

Moments later, Arsenal were thankful to their goalkeeper as Sadio Mane was found by Robertson clear of Rob Holding but the Spaniard kept out his shot with his legs to preserve Arsenal's lead.

Klopp turned to Minamino just before the hour mark to provide Arsenal with a different problem to the industrious James Milner. With the rain falling heavily over Wembley, Arsenal began to fatigue and within 14 minutes of his introduction, Minamino had his first Liverpool goal.

Mohamed Salah cut in from the right before the ball fell kindly for the Japanese forward to slot past Martinez. There was a brief pause to check the goal for handball but replays showed it had brushed the arm of Cedric Soares rather than the Liverpool substitute in the build-up.

Rhian Brewster lifts his spot-kick against the crossbar in the Community Shield Image: Rhian Brewster lifts his spot-kick against the crossbar in the Community Shield

By now, Liverpool sensed the opportunity to win the game within 90 minutes as Robertson's deep cross was chested down superbly by Mane but Martinez was out quickly to close the angle. There was still time for Joe Willock to snatch victory for Arsenal but he headed Cedric's cross wide when well placed.

As last year, the contest was decided on penalties and after Brewster's effort thundered onto the crossbar Aubameyang sent Alisson the wrong way to complete five perfect spot-kicks and a 16th Community Shield success for Arsenal.

Arsenal celebrate winning the 2020 Community Shield against Liverpool Image: Arsenal celebrate winning the 2020 Community Shield against Liverpool What the managers said Mikel Arteta is confident Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will extend his Arsenal stay 0:31 Arsenal head coach Mikel Arteta is confident Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will extend his stay

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta: "I keep saying the same thing [on Aubameyang's future]. I try to do my job which is to convince him that he's at the right place and the right environment here to produce moments like he's done today and he did here just three weeks ago. I am very positive that he's going to sign. There are a lot of things that are involved in a contract deal and we're trying to solve them.

"The move from the team for the goal we scored was really good and Aubameyang puts the ball all the time where it belongs which is in the back of the net. The way he took the last penalty was really good and it's another trophy for us. I'm delighted with his performance with and without the ball.

"I'm not worried [about the situation with Aubameyang]. We can only try to do as much as possible to convince the player or tell them what we think about him. We can put all the cards on the table to try to keep him here but afterwards it's down to the player and the agent to agree to that. I think we've built a really good relationship between us and hopefully we can do it. Now, I am confident and I'm happy. I can see how he behaves every day and how much he works in training. It's a really good sign."

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang celebrates Arsenal's shootout win over Liverpool Image: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang celebrates Arsenal's shootout win over Liverpool

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp: "We were here to win the game, I hope that much was obvious. We didn't lose the game but we lost the competition. If we scored earlier that would've helped but there wasn't enough time.

"I was pleased with parts of the game. I know what situation we're in from a physical and technical point of view. Against a 5-4-1 and a side with a low block you need fresh legs. Now we have two weeks to prepare the new season.

"We had to get control back of the game and we had that in the second half. Arsenal didn't really create chances and we had to work hard to win back the ball. We had our two or three big moments that we didn't take and that's the reason for the result."

Jurgen Klopp was encouraged by aspects on his side's performance 0:34 Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp was encouraged by elements of his team's display Liverpool's shootout woe - Opta stats
  • Arsenal have won the Community Shield for a 16th time (including shared titles), overtaking opponents Liverpool (15 times) and only behind Manchester United (21). Indeed, the Gunners have won the trophy in four of the last seven seasons.
  • Liverpool are the first side ever to lose the Community Shield on penalties in back-to-back years; this is also the first time the Reds have participated in the competition twice in two seasons without winning it (including shared) since the 1983 and 1984 matches.
  • Arsenal have won the Community Shield as FA Cup winners seven times (including as league/cup double winners and including shared titles) - more than any other side. Indeed, each of their last four Community Shield victories have come as FA Cup winners.
  • Arsenal are only the second side to win the Community Shield after a penalty shootout more than once, after Manchester United (five times).
  • Arsenal have won nine of their last 11 penalty shootouts in all competitions, including two in the Community Shield. Meanwhile, Liverpool have lost three of their last five shootouts, including two in the Community Shield.
Man of the match - Ainsley Maitland-Niles Ainsley Maitland-Niles produced a disciplined display amid transfer speculation Image: Ainsley Maitland-Niles produced a disciplined display amid transfer speculation

There were so many positives for Arteta, although it's curious that two of the star performers were goalkeeper Martinez and wing-back Ainsley Maitland-Niles - two players who have been strongly linked with moves away from Arsenal in the coming weeks.

Saturday was the versatile midfielder's 23rd birthday, capped later in the evening by a call-up to the England squad for the forthcoming Nations League double-header against Iceland and Denmark.

He played superbly on the left wing with Tierney providing support to nullify the threat of Mohamed Salah. This was a supremely disciplined display to add to his impressive outing against Manchester City's Riyad Mahrez in the FA Cup semi-final.

Arteta added the Community Shield to the FA Cup success in August 0:31 Arsenal head coach Mikel Arteta praises Ainsley Maitland-Niles for 'changing' after his man-of-the-match performance in their Community Shield win over Liverpool.

Eight of Arsenal's FA Cup-winning side started with Maitland-Niles among them, but he has been linked with a move to Wolves this summer. There is a need to raise funds but perhaps there are still big decisions to be made about just who is allowed to leave.

What's next?

The international break takes place over the next 10 days before squads return ahead of the start of the new Premier League season on Saturday, September 12.

Arsenal travel to face Fulham at 12.30pm, while later that day champions Liverpool host Leeds live on Sky Sports Premier League and Sky Sports Main Event. Coverage starts at 4.30pm with kick-off at 5.30pm.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Klopp doesn't expect sporting boycotts in UK

Sat, 08/29/2020 - 09:45
Megan Rapinoe: "With regards to racism, all the white players should be outraged every time there's a racist incident" By PA Media

Last Updated: 28/08/20 6:35pm

0:44 Jurgen Klopp says he doesn't expect the Premier League to follow major sports teams and players in the US and boycott fixtures in protest to continued racial injustices Jurgen Klopp says he doesn't expect the Premier League to follow major sports teams and players in the US and boycott fixtures in protest to continued racial injustices

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp is not expecting the boycotting of sporting events over racial injustice to spread to the UK.

A series of major fixtures in the United States have been postponed in the last two days after NBA stars began boycotting games in protest at the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Wisconsin last week.

Games in Major League Baseball, Major League Soccer, the National Hockey League and the WNBA have also been called off.

Klopp was asked about the matter as he held a press conference to preview the Premier League champions' season-opening Community Shield clash with Arsenal on Saturday.

Klopp said: "Whatever actions they take there they will have their reasons for it and I don't see them at the moment coming in England, but we have to see.

"It is a worldwide issue but, at the moment for some specific cases, they are thinking about proper actions in America because another thing happened that shouldn't have happened.

"That is why the players there do what they do but I don't see it coming at the moment in England."

5:20 NBA TV's Taylor Rooks reports on the mood of the players within the NBA bubble NBA TV's Taylor Rooks reports on the mood of the players within the NBA bubble

The NBA issued a statement saying the playoffs will resume on Saturday following talks between the league, players and team governors.

Megan Rapinoe, one of the stars of the United States team which won the women's football World Cup in France last year, says "everyone should be outraged" by racism.

4:56 Rooks explains the key role Michael Jordan is playing in talks between NBA players and owners Rooks explains the key role Michael Jordan is playing in talks between NBA players and owners

She said in a UEFA 'No To Racism' campaign video: "We have such a huge platform, and from an early age on this team I realised you can have such an impact off the field even just by saying something.

"With regards to racism, all the white players should be outraged every time there's a racist incident and a lot of times it's just the player who's having the incident done to them or who's having the abuse put on them, they're the ones that are outraged and everyone else is like, 'OK, we need to calm this down'.

"Everyone should be outraged."

Sky Sports Fantasy Football is back!

Another year, another £50,000 jackpot on the line. Sky Sports Fantasy Football makes its return for the 2020/21 season.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Liverpool's silverware hunt begins again

Sat, 08/29/2020 - 06:54
Peter Smith

Comment and Analysis @psmithXI

Follow Arsenal vs Liverpool in the Community Shield on skysports.com and the Sky Sports app with our live blog; kick-off 4.30pm, Saturday

Last Updated: 29/08/20 6:56am

Liverpool begin their quest for 2020/21 silverware at Wembley against Arsenal Liverpool begin their quest for 2020/21 silverware at Wembley against Arsenal Liverpool begin their quest for 2020/21 silverware at Wembley against Arsenal

Some fans will still be celebrating, but just 37 days after Liverpool lifted the Premier League trophy they will match-up with Arsenal in the Community Shield at Wembley on Saturday afternoon, kicking off a new season and a new pursuit of silverware.

It is a quicker-than-usual turnaround for the Premier League champions, with a condensed off-season set to be followed by a condensed, busy campaign. "The most intense, probably, we ever experience in our lives," predicted Jurgen Klopp.

Typically, captain Jordan Henderson has spoken this week about moving on from the triumphs of 2019/20 and focusing on what can be achieved in the future. But, with just a couple of weeks of training and a couple of friendlies under their belt, there is no doubt Liverpool will go into Saturday's showpiece with their preparations far from complete.

0:47 Former Liverpool winger John Barnes does not expect the club to dominate like Manchester United under Sir Alex Ferguson due to the competitiveness of the Premier League Former Liverpool winger John Barnes does not expect the club to dominate like Manchester United under Sir Alex Ferguson due to the competitiveness of the Premier League

"I would be very surprised if this will be the best game we play this season," Klopp said with a smile in his pre-match press conference. "But we should be ready to fight for a result because the opponent has a similar situation."

Indeed, that limited preparation may be enough to see them past an Arsenal side also feeling their way back to full fitness - although, with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang up front following his back-to-back doubles at Wembley at the end of last season, the Gunners - who beat Liverpool after the restart in July - will provide a stern test.

More importantly, Klopp and Liverpool supporters will hope to see signs the Reds are not too far off where they need to be come their opening Premier League fixture with Leeds United in a fortnight's time.

Liverpool and Arsenal friendlies so far...
  • MK Dons 1-4 Arsenal
  • Liverpool 3-0 Stuttgart
  • Red Bull Salzburg 2-2 Liverpool

With international fixtures to take place between now and then, Klopp's training-ground time with his players really is at a premium prior to the start of their title defence.

Beneficially, Liverpool have made few changes to the squad which dominated the league last time out. Kostas Tsimikas may make his first competitive Liverpool appearance at left-back and Rhian Brewster, who has scored three goals in their two friendlies, may be handed a start. But Klopp's squad know the demands and know what is expected of them in this side.

0:30 Rhian Brewster's second goal against Red Bull Salzburg was clinically dispatched from 20 yards out Rhian Brewster's second goal against Red Bull Salzburg was clinically dispatched from 20 yards out

Ultimately, success or defeat in the Community Shield has mattered little in terms of what comes next in the Premier League. Just eight Community Shield winners out of 28 have gone on to claim the title. And with an extra week before the Premier League gets under way on September 12 separating the start of the season and Saturday's showpiece, there will still be time to refresh and refine before Liverpool begin the defence of their crown.

But this Liverpool side have become used to winning. They feed off it, and last season they did it most times they stepped onto a pitch. Henderson will want another trophy lift and victory would help set the tone for what's to come.

If Liverpool are off the pace, Manchester City and the other Premier League hopefuls will be there to capitalise on any early slip-up. But Liverpool will be keen to remind them just why they are the ones to catch.

Community Shield stats
  • Arsenal and Liverpool will meet in the Community Shield final for a fourth time (previously in 1979, 1989 & 2002), with the Merseyside club winning the first two such encounters and the Gunners winning the most recent meeting in 2002 (1-0).
  • Liverpool and Arsenal will meet at Wembley stadium for the first time since the 1989 Community Shield final in which Liverpool won 1-0 courtesy of a first half Peter Beardsley strike.
  • Liverpool's Sadio Mané made his debut in English football against Arsenal in September 2014 (for Southampton) - since then, he has only scored more goals against Crystal Palace (9) in all competitions than against the Gunners (6).
  • Since his Liverpool debut in August 2015, Roberto Firmino has both scored (8) and been directly involved (11 - 8 goals, 3 assists) in more goals against Arsenal in all competitions than against any other opponent.
  • Excluding 2019 (Man City playing as 'double' winners), the winners of the FA Cup have beaten the league champions in four of the last five Community Shield matches, with Arsenal winning three of those (2014, 2015 and 2017).
  • Arsenal have won seven of their last nine Community Shield appearances, including each of the last three in a row.
Henderson: Liverpool still hungry for success Jordan Henderson says Liverpool must focus on future titles Jordan Henderson says Liverpool must focus on future titles Jordan Henderson says Liverpool must focus on future titles

Jordan Henderson says Liverpool are hungry for more success and they have put last season's title win behind them.

"To be honest, we haven't spoken about it [winning the league]," the Liverpool captain told the club's website.

"It's more about, 'Have you enjoyed your holiday?' We've been cracking on, really working hard. New season, new start and a lot more things we want to go on and achieve."

Hear more from the Liverpool captain here.

Arteta on Gabriel, Aubameyang 0:36 Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta says the club's move for Lille defender Gabriel Magalhaes is in the closing stages Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta says the club's move for Lille defender Gabriel Magalhaes is in the closing stages

Arsenal head coach Mikel Arteta is positive the club will soon complete the signing of defender Gabriel Magalhaes from Lille and agree a new contract with Aubameyang.

Gabriel is set to join Arsenal after they agreed a £27m fee with Lille for the defender, beating off competition from Premier League rivals Manchester United, who held late discussions with the player's representatives, Everton and Italian club Napoli for the 22-year-old.

More from Mikel Arteta on Arsenal's transfer business here

Players to take the knee before Community Shield

Players will take a knee before the men's and women's Community Shield games at Wembley on August 29, in support of the Black Lives Matter movement, the Football Association has confirmed.

FA Cup victors Manchester City Women and Women's Super League winners Chelsea Women play each other first on Saturday (kick-off, 12:30pm) before FA Cup winners Arsenal take on Premier League holders Liverpool (kick-off, 4:30pm).

An FA spokesperson said: "Players in both the women's and men's FA Community Shield matches this weekend will take a knee before kick-off in order to show solidarity to the black community and to highlight inequality and injustice experienced by this community."

Find out more here.

Sky Sports Fantasy Football is back!

Another year, another £50,000 jackpot on the line. Sky Sports Fantasy Football makes its return for the 2020/21 season.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

'Liverpool won't defend title - we'll attack next one'

Fri, 08/28/2020 - 22:41
Follow Arsenal vs Liverpool in the Community Shield on skysports.com and the Sky Sports app with our live blog; kick-off 4.30pm, Saturday By PA Media

Last Updated: 28/08/20 11:14pm

1:06 Jurgen Klopp has ruled out Liverpool trying to sign Lionel Messi this summer, but believes it would be 'great' for the Premier League if the Barcelona forward does move to England Jurgen Klopp has ruled out Liverpool trying to sign Lionel Messi this summer, but believes it would be 'great' for the Premier League if the Barcelona forward does move to England

Jurgen Klopp claims the best way for Liverpool to defend their Premier League title is to attack the next one.

Liverpool ended a 30-year wait for the title last season after an outstanding campaign in which they clocked up 32 wins and 99 points.

Topping that would be a remarkable achievement but Klopp feels that is the aim his players must have.

He feels they showed that mentality last year after accumulating 97 points and winning the Champions League in 2018-19 and he wants to see the same again.

0:44 Klopp says he doesn't expect the Premier League to follow major sports teams and players in the US and boycott fixtures in protest to continued racial injustices Klopp says he doesn't expect the Premier League to follow major sports teams and players in the US and boycott fixtures in protest to continued racial injustices

"We will not try to defend it, we will try to attack the next one," said the German, whose side launch their new campaign against FA Cup winners Arsenal in the Community Shield on Saturday.

"That's the truth, you don't change your approach. That is what we always did and there is no reason for changing it.

"Motivation will not be our problem. I know this team will not stop trying.

"I don't expect everything to happen for me, I never expected it, but I expect I will give absolutely everything and I expect the boys to do that as well."

Liverpool will have to deal with the tag of being champions, which could provide opponents with extra motivation, but Klopp feels he is well used to dealing with that anyway.

3:35 A transfer round-up of all 20 Premier League clubs on The Transfer Show A transfer round-up of all 20 Premier League clubs on The Transfer Show

He said: "When I came here I was really surprised how much a game against Liverpool means to other teams, even when we were not considered as Liverpool of the past, like seventh or eighth in the league.

"When we arrived at the stadium I thought, 'Wow, they really have a proper go for it'.

"That has never changed, so I am not sure we can have a bigger target on our back than we already had last season.

"Everybody wanted to beat us, obviously, for a good reason. [Although] not so many could do it, I don't think that will change.

"If we think because we are champions they want to beat us even more, then we have already lost a few per cent of our approach, mood, attitude and all that stuff. I am not ready for that."

Liverpool kick off their Premier League title defence against Leeds, live on Sky Liverpool kick off their Premier League title defence against Leeds, live on Sky Liverpool kick off their Premier League title defence against Leeds, live on Sky

The season has a disjointed start for Liverpool, beginning only five weeks after they wrapped up their last campaign.

They have been back in training just a fortnight and, after the Community Shield, their preparations will be further disrupted by the loss of a number of players due to international duty.

In light of the current situation regarding the coronavirus and international travel, Klopp admits he is concerned, even if fully trusting of national associations.

He said: "I don't want to use the word worried and see this in a headline. I know everybody tries their best to keep the boys safe but if a 16-year-old goes - a first time out - even when it is a good guy you are slightly concerned.

"I would like to keep them here, not for training, just because we know what we do but I am really sure all the FAs will try to make sure the boys are in a safe place."

Klopp: No chance Liverpool will sign Messi 2:38 Lionel Messi has requested a meeting with Barcelona's board Lionel Messi has requested a meeting with Barcelona's board

Klopp has ruled out Liverpool signing Lionel Messi this summer, but admits the Barcelona forward would prove a "great" addition for the Premier League should he move to an English club.

Messi has told Barcelona he wants to exercise a clause in his contract, allowing him to leave for free with immediate effect, but the La Liga club believe it has expired and the player is contracted until 2021 with a £626m (€700m) release clause.

Asked whether Liverpool would like to sign the Argentina international, Klopp replied: "Interest? Who doesn't want to have Messi in their team? But no chance. The numbers are absolutely not for us. But good player, to be honest!"

Transfer Centre LIVE!

All the latest news, analysis and rumours from the window in one place.

The summer transfer window will run for 10 weeks from July 27 and close at 11pm on October 5.

A domestic-only window for trades between the Premier League and EFL then runs from October 5 and closes on Friday October 16 at 5pm. Follow all the news and analysis on Sky Sports News and across Sky Sports' digital platforms, including with our dedicated Transfer Centre blog.

Sky Sports Fantasy Football is back!

Another year, another £50,000 jackpot on the line. Sky Sports Fantasy Football makes its return for the 2020/21 season.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Henderson: Liverpool still hungry for success

Fri, 08/28/2020 - 08:10
Henderson: "Hopefully we can take confidence from the last year or two but we need to stay hungry and need to keep the desire to go and want more"

Last Updated: 28/08/20 8:15am

Jordan Henderson believes Liverpool can build on their title-winning campaign Jordan Henderson believes Liverpool can build on their title-winning campaign Jordan Henderson believes Liverpool can build on their title-winning campaign

Jordan Henderson says Liverpool are hungry for more success and they have put last season's title win behind them.

Liverpool finished 18 points clear of Manchester City and amassed 99 points as they won their first title for 30 years.

Liverpool are now focused on Saturday's Community Shield against Arsenal before their first game of the new Premier League campaign against Leeds on September 12.

"To be honest, we haven't spoken about it (winning the league)," the Liverpool captain told the club's website.

"It's more about, 'Have you enjoyed your holiday?' We've been cracking on, really working hard. New season, new start and a lot more things we want to go on and achieve.

"[I'm] really excited to see what we can do this season, another big season for us. Hopefully we can take confidence from the last year or two but we need to stay hungry and need to keep the desire to go and want more.

Jordan Henderson lifts the Premier League trophy Jordan Henderson lifts the Premier League trophy Jordan Henderson lifts the Premier League trophy

"I can certainly see that from the first days that I've watched training in pre-season."

Liverpool returned to Merseyside this week after their pre-season trip to Austria where they beat Stuttgart 3-0 and drew 2-2 with Red Bull Salzburg.

"You've got to look at the players in the squad and the manager as well, it's always about looking forward and wanting more and improving," Henderson added.

 Henderson says there has been no talk about last season's title win during pre-season training  Henderson says there has been no talk about last season's title win during pre-season training Henderson says there has been no talk about last season's title win during pre-season training

"I think that's just natural to us now. We've always looked at the next game as we always see it as the biggest one and that 90 minutes we give everything to win.

"Pre-season is no different, you know you've got to train so hard to be ready for the first game of the season, which for us comes against Arsenal in the Community Shield - so a little bit earlier than everybody else.

"We've got to be right at it come that first game and we've got another chance to win silverware. After that, the Premier League starts pretty quick after that as well, so you need to be ready, as you do in every season. As I say, by the looks of it, we are."

Sky Sports Fantasy Football is back!

Another year, another £50,000 jackpot on the line. Sky Sports Fantasy Football makes its return for the 2020/21 season.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Friendlies: Brewster double earns Liverpool draw

Wed, 08/26/2020 - 09:18
Virgil van Dijk taken off with cut to the eye; Newcastle and West Ham also win

Last Updated: 26/08/20 9:19am

0:30 Highlights of Liverpool's 2-2 draw with Red Bull Salzburg Highlights of Liverpool's 2-2 draw with Red Bull Salzburg

Rhian Brewster's double earned Liverpool a 2-2 comeback draw with Red Bull Salzburg as the Premier League champions continued their countdown to the new season.

The forward scored twice in the second half after two goals from Patson Daka put the hosts 2-0 ahead in Austria.

Georginio Wijnaldum replaced Curtis Jones at the Red Bull Arena in the only change to the side which beat Stuttgart 3-0.

Virgil van Dijk picked up a cut above the eye against Red Bull Salzburg Virgil van Dijk picked up a cut above the eye against Red Bull Salzburg Virgil van Dijk picked up a cut above the eye against Red Bull Salzburg

Daka opened the scoring after three minutes and doubled it 10 minutes later from close range after a Salzburg break.

Liverpool lost central defender Virgil van Dijk with a cut above his right eye in the second half before Brewster made it 2-1.

The 20-year-old then secured a draw with nine minutes left when he lifted a cool finish into the net from 25 yards after Jones sparked panic in Salzburg's backline.

Jurgen Klopp allayed any concerns regarding Van Dijk's fitness after the draw, telling the club's official website: "Virg only looks like he has a piercing now and has a plaster on it. It should not be, and is, no problem. In the moment it is of course not cool but there will not be a problem."

Liverpool will face Arsenal in the Community Shield on Saturday and Mikel Arteta's side started their pre-season with a 4-1 win against MK Dons.

Mohamed Elneny - back from his loan spell in Turkey - fired Arsenal ahead inside four minutes before Eddie Nketiah added the second not long after.

MK Dons' goal came when Rob Holding diverted the ball past the returning Bernd Leno. Mark McGuinness scored Arsenal's third before Reiss Nelson converted from the spot to secure a comfortable Gunners victory.

0:36 Highlights from Newcastle's 3-0 win over Crewe, in which Andy Carroll was on target Highlights from Newcastle's 3-0 win over Crewe, in which Andy Carroll was on target

Newcastle picked up a solid 3-0 win in their first pre-season match against Crewe Alexandra as their training camp in York continues with Steve Bruce naming a different XI in either half.

Andy Carroll broke the deadlock for the Magpies in the 39th minute before Christian Atsu doubled the lead two minutes after the break. Federico Fernandez then sealed the victory later in the half, although there was no place in the squad for new signing Jeff Hendrick.

Sebastien Haller scored a hat-trick for West Ham in a pre-season game against Ipswich Sebastien Haller scored a hat-trick for West Ham in a pre-season game against Ipswich Sebastien Haller scored a hat-trick for West Ham in a pre-season game against Ipswich

West Ham were involved in two friendlies on Tuesday and won them both against Ipswich and Wycombe.

Sebastien Haller netted a hat-trick against Ipswich in a 4-1 victory with Tomas Soucek - who scored three times after the Premier League restart - adding his strike in the middle of two from his team-mate as the Hammers surged into the lead during a hectic five-minute period.

Former West Ham striker Freddie Sears scored the consolation for Ipswich with the score at 2-0.

West Ham were 4-1 winners against Ipswich West Ham were 4-1 winners against Ipswich West Ham were 4-1 winners against Ipswich

But the contingent at Adams Park - coached by Alan Irvine and Stuart Pearce - went one better, beating newly-promoted Wycombe 5-1.

West Ham opened the scoring inside five minutes as Arthur Masuaku lashed home via the crossbar.

0:25 Highlights from West Ham's 5-1 friendly win at Wycombe, which included a comedy own goal Highlights from West Ham's 5-1 friendly win at Wycombe, which included a comedy own goal

The lead was doubled when Darius Charles' backpass wriggled under the foot of goalkeeper David Stockdale before Wycombe pulled one back through Alex Samuel.

Manuel Lanzini and Jarrod Bowen then made it 4-1 to West Ham before half-time. Bowen added his second of the afternoon with the only goal of the second half to round off a comfortable victory for the Premier League side.

Crystal Palace also began their pre-season with a victory, beating Oxford United 2-1 at Selhurst Park.

1:01 Highlights from Crystal Palace's 2-1 win against Oxford United Highlights from Crystal Palace's 2-1 win against Oxford United

It was a lively encounter too as Cameron Brannagan put the visitors ahead inside 12 minutes before James McCarthy was forced off not long after.

In the second half, Jeffrey Schlupp missed a penalty after a foul on Wilfried Zaha. But six minutes later, Crystal Palace were ahead thanks to goals from Zaha and James McArthur.

Meanwhile, Sheffield United's game against Dundee United was called off at half-time due to weather conditions. Billy Sharp's first half goal had seen the Blades lead 1-0.

1:00 Highlights from Coventry's 3-2 win at Burton Albion Highlights from Coventry's 3-2 win at Burton Albion

Coventry made it two pre-season wins out of two after Jodi Jones scored a last-minute goal to give them a 3-2 victory at Burton Albion.

Two goals from new Burton signing Kane Hemmings either side of Jamie Allen's equaliser gave the League One side a 2-1 lead.

But goals from Amadou Bakayoko and Jones secured the comeback win for the Championship side.

Sky Sports Fantasy Football is back!

Another year, another £50,000 jackpot on the line. Sky Sports Fantasy Football makes its return for the 2020/21 season.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

PL clubs play waiting game over Brooks

Mon, 08/24/2020 - 16:38
Manchester United, Liverpool, Leicester, Tottenham and Everton are all said to be keen on the Wales international

Last Updated: 24/08/20 8:57pm

Bournemouth are open to selling David Brooks following their relegation to the Championship Bournemouth are open to selling David Brooks following their relegation to the Championship Bournemouth are open to selling David Brooks following their relegation to the Championship

Bournemouth are yet to receive an official bid for winger David Brooks, despite continued interest from a host of top Premier League clubs.

Bournemouth's board have made it clear they want to keep 23-year old at the Vitality Stadium this summer, but appreciate they may receive an offer they find difficult to turn down.

Up to five clubs have made it clear they want the Wales midfielder - with reports suggesting Manchester United, Liverpool, Leicester, Tottenham and Everton are all keen.

2:31 Bournemouth face a tough battle to get back to the Premier League, but will David Brooks be there to help them do it? Our reporter Mark McAdam gives you the inside story. Bournemouth face a tough battle to get back to the Premier League, but will David Brooks be there to help them do it? Our reporter Mark McAdam gives you the inside story.

However, for now, none have placed an official offer and it is understood no detailed contract offers have been made to the player either.

Following their relegation to the Championship, Bournemouth have already sold defender Nathan Ake to Manchester City and goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale to Sheffield United in significant deals.

Bournemouth manager Jason Tindall, who replaced long-time boss Eddie Howe following their relegation, previously insisted there would be no "fire-sale" at the club.

"We as a football club have got a value of what we believe for our players and if that value is met then players have got the opportunity to then discuss with whoever they need to discuss with, and then make the decision they feel is right for them," Tindall said.

Jason Tindall insists Brooks can leave only at the right price Jason Tindall insists Brooks can leave only at the right price Jason Tindall insists Brooks can leave only at the right price

"But first and foremost, it needs to be right for the football club and once it's right for the football club then, as you've seen in the past, I don't think it's a club that will stand in anybody's way providing that the club's happy with and it meets the valuation of the player."

Brooks' possible departure along with striker Callum Wilson, who is also attracting Premier League interest, could see Tindall's squad further depleted.

Following a breakthrough 2018/19 campaign in which he scored seven Premier League goals, Brooks missed much of last season following ankle surgery, only returning for Project Restart in June.

Brooks featured in all nine of Bournemouth's games after the restart, scoring once, but was unable to help lift them higher than an 18th-placed finish.

Transfer Centre LIVE!

All the latest news, analysis and rumours from the window in one place.

The summer transfer window will run for 10 weeks from July 27 and close at 11pm on October 5.

A domestic-only window for trades between the Premier League and EFL then runs from October 5 and closes on Friday October 16 at 5pm. Follow all the news and analysis on Sky Sports News and across Sky Sports' digital platforms, including with our dedicated Transfer Centre blog.

Have you opted into Sky Bet Club?

Opt in and bet £25 or more before 23:59 on Sunday to earn a free £5. Free bets will credited by 7pm on Monday.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

How Thiago could transform Liverpool

Mon, 08/24/2020 - 11:30
Adam Bate

Comment and Analysis @ghostgoal

A detailed look at how the Bayern Munich playmaker Thiago Alcantara could impact Liverpool's build-up play through midfield...

Last Updated: 25/08/20 7:05am

Thiago Alcantara would bring new qualities to Liverpool's midfield Thiago Alcantara would bring new qualities to Liverpool's midfield Thiago Alcantara would bring new qualities to Liverpool's midfield

The commentator was just saying how comfortable Paris Saint-Germain were looking when it happened. "They are quite happy for Bayern to have the ball in their half," he said. But it was at that precise moment that Thiago Alcantara weaved his magic, firing a crisp pass between the lines.

The ball was in the back of the net seconds later. The goal was enough to win the 2020 Champions League for Bayern Munich and while scorer Kingsley Coman was the official man of the match, the role of Thiago in the team's triumph escaped absolutely no one.

At 29 and reluctant to sign a new contract, Bayern realise they might have to sell. Liverpool appears to be the preferred destination and it is easy to see why the move might appeal. Jurgen Klopp's side can do almost anything. But they cannot do what Thiago can do.

"Liverpool's squad is fine in most areas," Jamie Carragher recently told Sky Sports. "But l think there are a couple of glaring areas where it should be better than it is."

Cover for Andrew Robertson has already arrived. Attacking depth would help. But a midfield creator could be transformative. Naby Keita brings some of those qualities, albeit slightly further forwards, but think of that midfield and one still suspects industry is valued over invention.

It has hardly been a problem, whether it is Fabinho cracking one in from 30 yards or Jordan Henderson driving the team on to glory at home and abroad over the past 18 months. It has come to be seen as the Liverpool way. A decision to focus on the flanks. A style that works.

Which is what makes the link with Thiago so fascinating.

0:44 Hans-Dieter Flick joked that Thiago has decided to stay at Bayern Hans-Dieter Flick joked that Thiago has decided to stay at Bayern

He is the Spanish pass master with Brazilian roots and a Barcelona upbringing. A man at home in the midfield hot house, seemingly born to work in those tight spaces.

Pep Guardiola gave him his professional debut and it shows. He was the one who first took him to Munich. "He is the only player I want," said Guardiola at the time. "It will be him or no one."

That was seven Bundesliga titles ago. A period in which Thiago has become a symbol of the shift as Bayern have totally dominated the league - and with it the football.

He might be seen as a Guardiola player, but he could yet find himself in a Klopp team. Even though the German has adapted his own approach in recent years, there remains a difference. Perhaps that is the whole idea. Thiago brings new qualities.

He averaged 82.6 completed passes per 90 minutes in the Bundesliga this past season - the most of any regular midfielder. He had a pass completion rate in excess of 90 per cent - an accuracy level that does not really reflect the range of his passing with both feet.

Thiago's passing sonar for the 2019/20 Champions League season Thiago's passing sonar for the 2019/20 Champions League season Thiago's passing sonar for the 2019/20 Champions League season

Those numbers hint at the sort of metronomic use of the ball through midfield that has come to characterise Guardiola's Manchester City. Rodri and Ilkay Gundogan completed the most passes per 90 minutes by midfielders in the Premier League last season. They were followed by Chelsea's Jorginho and Mateo Kovacic. No Liverpool player came close.

Liverpool's passing networks for the 2019/20 Premier League season Liverpool's passing networks for the 2019/20 Premier League season Liverpool's passing networks for the 2019/20 Premier League season

That should come as no surprise. It is indicative of Klopp's use of his midfield. The passing networks during Liverpool's title-winning season reveal the plans behind their build-up play.

The ball is spread from the centre of defence to the full-backs out wide. Their job is to raid forward and connect directly with the team's attackers. The role of the midfielders in this system is often to cover those advances, recycle possession and prevent the counter.

It is rare that Liverpool use the centre of midfield to penetrate the opposition penalty box directly. The passing sonars for the team highlight the fact that the more ambitious delivery comes from the full-backs and the wide forwards. In midfield, the passes go sideways.

As a result, the threat level when Liverpool have the ball in the middle of the pitch is indirect. When the ball is in those areas, the plan is to move it out wide once more in search of an opening, stretching the play and creating spaces for Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah.

Liverpool's focus of attack during the 2019/20 Premier League season Liverpool's focus of attack during the 2019/20 Premier League season Liverpool's focus of attack during the 2019/20 Premier League season

The contrast with City is illustrated by the through-balls completed by Kevin De Bruyne. He made 13 such passes last season, more than three times that of any Liverpool player.

Thiago's inclusion would not change all that. He is more than capable of keeping possession and playing his part in this game of ball circulation. Where he could help Liverpool is by moving the ball with one and two touches, opening games up against deeper defences.

That could be an attraction for Klopp when the wide route to goal has been shut down with opponents content to defend the perimeter of their penalty box. Thiago picks passes others cannot - a consequence of a lifetime spent threading the needle for Barca and Bayern.

It would be a new challenge, trading his job with the new European champions for one with the reigning conquerors of the Premier League and the world. Thiago would have to adapt to Liverpool rather than the other way around. The ball might not reach him quite so often.

It is not just the fact that Bayern play more passes than the rest. For every seven passes completed by his team per 90 minutes last season, Thiago was making one of them. For Gini Wijnaldum, despite being similarly diligent in retaining possession, that number for Liverpool was only one in 12. The patterns of play are different.

The tendency at Liverpool is to bypass the middle of the pitch more often, playing around them rather than into the feet of the sitting midfielder. It is why other qualities such as winning the ball back and pressing opponents are of such great importance to Klopp.

Thiago will need some of that but he might just change Liverpool a little too. Perhaps Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez would look to him rather than Robertson and Trent Alexander-Arnold. Maybe Mane and Salah would bounce passes back rather than look to go it alone.

Thiago is not a typical Liverpool player but that is what has made the speculation so intriguing. He would add a new dynamic. And that could be bad news for everyone else.

Have you opted into Sky Bet Club?

Opt in and bet £25 or more before 23:59 on Sunday to earn a free £5. Free bets will credited by 7pm on Monday.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

Categories: LFC NEWS

Pages