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Jürgen Klopp on Naby Keita, Adam Lallana and centre-back options

Sun, 01/06/2019 - 22:29

Jürgen Klopp has offered in-depth analyses of the situations of Naby Keita and Adam Lallana as Liverpool prepare to face Wolverhampton Wanderers in the third round of the FA Cup.

Keita has not featured for the Reds since their 2-0 Premier League victory at Wolves last month, while Lallana has not started a game since early November.

However, Klopp has made it clear that both midfielders remain very much in his selection thoughts, with the boss also discussing his options at centre-back for Monday’s trip to Molineux during a pre-match media briefing at Melwood.

Read on for a full transcript...

On whether there is a reason Keita has remained on the bench for Liverpool’s last three games…

No, that’s how it sometimes is. With Naby, and I spoke to him, everything is fine and I am completely happy. Could he be a bit more confident in the games? Yes. Is he exactly the player [he was] in his best time at Leipzig? No, but he’s still adapting, that’s how it is. But everybody saw it how brilliant he played in the first part [of the season]. Tottenham was a fantastic game of him without thinking too much, and then we made a change I think around the PSG game and the boys have to deal with it. Then a little injury here, a little injury there and it was kind of a little setback.

But he is a fantastic player and I’m really happy to have him here. It’s so good and I am really looking forward to our common future because see if you see it every day, wow, there is so much to come and so much influence he can have on each game, so that’s all good. No, there was no reason [for him not playing recently], just because other boys were in good shape as well. It was a bit about positioning, a bit about system and all that stuff. That’s how football decisions are. There is really, really no doubt about the boy, he is an outstanding player.

On whether Monday’s game is a good opportunity for the No.8 to return to the starting line-up…

I can tell you it is a good opportunity for all the players. We can talk about all the players then Wolves know my complete line-up! I said already two [Simon Mignolet and Alberto Moreno], so you can make of it what you want. It’s pretty clear if we make changes who will come in. 

On Lallana…

Adam is actually in outstanding shape - I said it a few times maybe, but it’s unbelievable in training. So we have to say it was close in the last game: ‘Do we start him or not?’ and stuff like this. It’s really, really good and it’s like always in life, if you learn from your experiences... you cannot learn too much from being injured and stuff like that, but how is your mood? Adam is a player who always wants to play. He would play four games a day if possible just from his desire to play football. He is really, I would say in the moment, in the best moment since I know him, just like as a person he is fantastic. He will have a big part of our season I am really sure and that’s cool. But in training everything is good, when he came on everything was good so far, so now he is ready to take these little steps.

That was probably in the past not exactly the same, just not because he always accepts my decisions but it’s what you make of it. If you are in or out or whatever, do you want to change something and do more? My players, if I am in doubt about somebody then I speak immediately, if something is wrong I speak immediately. But for players when I am not in doubt they don’t know it and think they have to do something differently, that was in the past when we didn’t know each other good enough maybe a bit more difficult. But now, everything is fine. It’s good to have him, he’s an important part of the squad.

On his central defensive options for the game, with Joe Gomez and Joel Matip out injured...

To be creative. Or we play the two [Dejan Lovren and Virgil van Dijk] again, we will see. If not, then we have to be creative. We will see what we do, but we cannot, we will not sign a centre-half for one game or whatever, that will not happen. Joe and Joel look good - obviously not good enough for Monday, not good enough I would say for the game after that, for Brighton, [but] hopefully then they are at least in full team training. I think for Joel it would be possible, for Joe at least there’s a little hope that it can be the same, so we will see. Joe had a good day, a very good day [on Friday], so that’s good.

The latest team news from both camps ahead of Wolves v Liverpool>>

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Kamil Grabara joins AGF Aarhus on loan

Sun, 01/06/2019 - 18:59

Liverpool goalkeeper Kamil Grabara has joined Danish club AGF Aarhus on loan for the rest of 2018-19, subject to international clearance.

The Poland youth international is set to spend the second half of the season with the 10th-placed Superliga side, who resume their campaign in early February.

Grabara joined the Reds in 2016 and is a regular member of the first-team training squad as well as representing Neil Critchley’s U23s.

He also featured for Liverpool in a pre-season friendly with Manchester United last summer.

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LFC Women suffer Brighton home loss

Sun, 01/06/2019 - 17:10

It was a frustrating day for Liverpool FC Women as they lost 2-0 to Brighton and Hove Albion in the Women's Super League at Prenton Park on Sunday afternoon.

Goals in either half from Laura Rafferty and Ini Umotong secured the three points for Hope Powell’s side.

Playing in their first game of 2019, Liverpool FC Women boss Vicky Jepson was without influential players Jasmine Matthews, Rinsola Babajide, Rhiannon Roberts and Niamh Fahey.

The away side started brightly and almost took the lead inside the opening four minutes when a surging run from Felicity Gibbons saw her cut inside and curl an effort just past the post.

Reds stopper Anke Preuss then showed her quality with a brilliant close range save to palm a header off the line.

The heroics of Press kept Brighton at bay again when she was at full stretch to keep out a curled drive from Chloe Peplow.

The Reds carved out a big chance on 16 minutes when a free-kick from Laura Coombs picked out Courtney Sweetman-Kirk at the back post. Unfortunately, the striker didn’t realise how much time and space she had as she went for a first time effort that sent the ball wide of the target.

Brighton took the lead on 33 minutes and it came from a corner. Umotong struck a spectacular effort that came back off the bar and Rafferty was on hand to net the rebound from close range.

Three minutes after the restart it was 2-0. A misplaced clearance fell to Umotong, who despite looking in an offside position ran through to beat Preuss.

To be fair to Jepson’s side they didn’t let their heads go down and with a bit of luck might have got back into the game.

On 55 minutes a superb run down the right from substitute Yana Daniels ended up with her being brought down in the penalty area, but despite strong appeals only a goal-kick was given.

Satara Murray had an effort cleared off the line from close range but it just wasn’t Liverpool’s day.

Jepson gave two of the club’s highly rated youngsters an appearance in the second half with Lauren Thomas being joined on the field by debutant Simran Jhamat.

Liverpool FC Women: Preuss, S Murray, Robe, Little, Bradley-Auckland, Rodgers, Clarke, Coombs, Sweetman-Kirk (Jhamat, 74), C Murray (Thomas, 70), Linnett (Daniels, 45).

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Liverpool U18s win Mercedes-Benz Junior Cup

Sun, 01/06/2019 - 14:39

Liverpool U18s won the Mercedes-Benz Junior Cup by coming from behind to beat Rapid Vienna 3-2 in Sunday's final.

The young Reds travelled to Stuttgart to take part in the prestigious two-day indoor tournament and qualified for the semi-finals by advancing through the group stage on Saturday.

After losing 4-3 at Atalanta United in their opening pool match, Barry Lewtas' side responded strongly to register victories over VFB Stuttgart and FC Schalke 04.

Hosts Stuttgart were defeated 1-0 courtesy of Jack Walls, before strikes from Elijah Dixon-Bonner and Fidel O'Rourke saw off Schalke 2-1.

Another German opponent, Bayern Munich, awaited in Sunday's last-four match, and Jake Cain netted decisively to book Liverpool's spot in the final with a 1-0 win.

Vienna opened the scoring in the showpiece game, but Adbi Sharif, O'Rourke and Remi Savage made it 3-1 to the young Reds, who then held on to claim the trophy after the Austrian outfit had pulled one back.

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What's on: This week's LFC community events

Sun, 01/06/2019 - 10:30

Check out a schedule of local community events planned by the LFC Foundation and Red Neighbours teams in the coming week.

For more information on these activities, and the work of the two organisations, follow @LFCFoundation and @Red_Neighbours on Twitter or click here.

Monday January 7

Premier League Kicks sessions

Walton Hall Park - 7pm-8pm (age 11-17)
Speke Community Centre - 6pm-8pm (age 11+)

Respect 4 All Ability Counts session (Disability)

Anfield Sports and Community Centre - 6pm-7pm (age 8-12), 7pm-8pm (age 13+)

Tuesday January 8

Premier League Kicks session

Toxteth Firefit Hub - 5.30pm-6.30pm (age 8-13), 6.30pm-7.30pm (age 14-19)

Respect 4 All (Disability)

Anfield Sports and Community Centre - 6pm-7pm (age 8-16), 7pm-8pm (age 17+) 

Red Neighbours Walking Football  

Anfield Sports and Community Centre - 3pm-4pm

Open Goals

Seaforth in Bowersdale Park (Meet at Bowersdale Resource Centre) - 5pm-6pm

Wednesday January 9    

Premier League Kicks sessions

Anfield Sports and Community Centre - 5pm-6pm (age 7-13), 6pm-7pm (age 13-17), 5pm-6pm (age 8-13 girls only)

Respect 4 All (Disability)

Anfield Sports and Community Centre - 6pm-7pm (age 8+)

Open Goals

Crosby in Coronation Park (Meet at Alchemy Crosby Youth & Community Centre) - 4.30pm-5.30pm

Thursday January 10

Premier League Kicks sessions

Liverpool Aquatics Centre, Wavertree - 5pm-6pm (age 8-13), 6pm-7pm (age 14-17)

Gateacre School - 6pm-8pm (age 11-17)

Respect 4 All (Disability)

Anfield Sports and Community Centre - 7pm-8pm (age 8+)

Military Veterans

Netherton Goals - 5pm-7.30pm

Friday January 11

Premier League Kicks sessions

Liverpool Aquatics Centre, Wavertree - 6pm-8pm (age 14-19)
Anfield Sports and Community Centre - 6pm-9pm (age 14-19)
Croxteth Sports Centre - 6pm-8pm (age 11-17)
Wirral Hive - 6pm-8pm (age 13-19)
Kirkby Leisure Centre - 5pm-6pm (age 8-13), 6pm-8pm (age 14-17)
Netherton Activity Centre - 6pm-7pm (age 8-11), 7pm-8pm (age 12-19)

Respect 4 All (Disability)

Anfield Sports and Community Centre - 6pm-7pm (age 8-16), 7pm-8pm (age 17+)

Red Neighbours Walking Football  

Anfield Sports and Community Centre - 11am-12pm

Red Neighbours Walking Netball 

Anfield Sports and Community Centre - 11.30am-12.30pm

Saturday January 12

Respect 4 All (Disability)

Woodchurch High School - 10.30am-11.30am (SLD Child), 11.30am-12.30pm (Ability Counts), 12.30pm-1.30pm (SLD Adults)

Open Goals 

Wavertree Sports Park - 11am-12pm, 12pm-1pm 
Stanley Park - 11am-12pm, 12pm-1pm 
Norris Green Park - 1.30pm-3pm
Jubilee Sports Bank - 1.30pm-2.30pm

Sunday January 13   

Open Goals    

Walton Hall Park - 1pm-2pm, 2pm-3pm
Belle Vale Park - 1pm-2pm, 2pm-3pm 
Doric Park - 11am-12pm

Military Veterans 

LFC Academy - 2pm-5pm

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Mignolet: It's not easy for me, but Alisson is 'really special'

Sun, 01/06/2019 - 10:01

Simon Mignolet’s situation is, he admits, ‘not easy’.

However, the Belgian is somewhat philosophical about his status as Liverpool’s second-choice goalkeeper given the standing of the club’s established No.1.

“Of course it isn’t easy. I’ve spoken about it before - it’s not something that you want to be doing, but the team is doing so well and you just try to help the team as best as you can,” Mignolet, who is set to start Monday’s FA Cup third-round tie versus Wolverhampton Wanderers, tells Liverpoolfc.com.

“I’m behind Alisson who is a really good goalkeeper - probably within the best five goalkeepers in the world, if not the best - and you can accept and understand it.

“We try to work hard and we get along really well as well, the both of us. I can learn from him, he can learn from me and we just try to work as hard as we can.

“Not only between the goalkeepers, but I also know that I have to be ready for if anything happens or the team needs me, and therefore I have to be working hard on daily basis for when the chance comes along or I get called upon. 

“It’s not easy, mentally especially, but I try to keep the focus as best as I can. That’s the only thing I can do really.”

Alisson's outrageous pass v Arsenal

Match-winning saves and jaw-droppingly impressive distribution have been features of Alisson’s embryonic Liverpool career - factors that have contributed to the Reds’ elite defensive statistics this season.

The Brazilian has registered 14 clean sheets in his 27 appearances for the club to date while, across Europe’s ‘big five’ divisions, only Paris Saint-Germain can match his side’s record of conceding just 10 times in league football so far this term.

Alisson's brilliant last-gasp save v Napoli

But what exactly are Alisson’s best attributes?

“I think he’s just a naturally good goalkeeper,” begins Mignolet’s expert assessment of his teammate’s qualities.

“He’s got the talent and everything comes natural to him, which makes him a really special goalkeeper. 

“He doesn’t have to really think about anything and switch off, it’s always coming fluently and that makes it very easy for him to play in goal. 

“He’s No.1 for Brazil in front of the ‘keeper for Manchester City, so that says itself a lot already. He’s doing really well for the team and I can only learn from him.”

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Wolves v Liverpool: Team news

Sun, 01/06/2019 - 07:58

Jürgen Klopp has confirmed his intention to rotate for Monday’s FA Cup third-round tie at Wolverhampton Wanderers.

Liverpool make their second visit to Molineux of the season having concluded a demanding run of 11 games in a little under six weeks against Manchester City on Thursday.

Klopp explained during his pre-match press conference that such a hectic schedule necessitates changes, with Simon Mignolet and Alberto Moreno definite starters.

Joe Gomez (leg) and Joel Matip (collarbone) are on track to return to team training in the coming days, but Monday’s match will come too soon for the defensive duo.

“He [Mignolet] will play, of course,” the boss said.

“I can say Alberto will play as well, there is no doubt about that. He has to play, that’s clear.

“Yes, we have to [make changes]. That’s clear. We came through the intense period now somehow OK, but of course we have to make changes. How many I don’t know, but we have to. There is no chance for anything else.”

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Nuno Espirito Santo, meanwhile, has a fully fit squad to choose from, with Diogo Jota back in full training after the hamstring injury that forced him to miss Wolves’ last four fixtures, including the 2-0 defeat to the Reds on December 21.

Romain Saiss, who was substituted due to a knock to his knee in the Midlanders’ 2-0 loss to Crystal Palace on Wednesday, is also available.

“Diogo started training on Friday. The moment he starts training with the team he’s always an option for us,” Nuno told the media.

“Everybody trained, so everybody is fit.”

Last time out

Manchester City v Liverpool (January 3): Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, Van Dijk, Robertson, Henderson, Milner, Wijnaldum, Mane, Salah, Firmino.

Wolves v Crystal Palace (January 2): Patricio, Bennett, Coady, Boly, Doherty, Otto, Moutinho, Saiss, Costa, Cavaleiro, Jimenez.

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Pick up your LFC Women's programme v Brighton

Sun, 01/06/2019 - 06:00

Liverpool FC Women host Brighton & Hove Albion in the Women's Super League at Prenton Park on Sunday - make sure you pick up an official programme if you're heading to the game.

Kick-off is at 2pm GMT and the official matchday programme will keep you informed and entertained with all the latest Reds news.

Inside, there are exclusive interviews with Republic of Ireland midfielder Niamh Fahey, attacker Ashley Hodson and Reds' physiotherapist Hina Chauhan.

Manager Vicky Jepson offers her thoughts going into the game against Hope Powell's side, while we also hear from captain Sophie Bradley-Auckland.

There is the lowdown on our visitors from the south coast as well as all the latest match action, facts and statistics.

With all this and much more, make sure you pick up your copy of the official matchday programme which will be on sale inside the ground, priced at £2.

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Klopp on Moreno selection, City reaction and Wolves tie

Sat, 01/05/2019 - 22:30

Alberto Moreno will start Liverpool’s FA Cup third-round tie at Wolverhampton Wanderers on Monday evening, Jürgen Klopp has confirmed.

The Spaniard is set to be named in the Reds’ defence at Molineux to make his fifth appearance of the season so far, with Simon Mignolet also in line to begin the clash.

Klopp revealed the decision during a pre-match briefing with journalists at Melwood, during which he discussed how he’s dealt with his side suffering a first Premier League defeat of the campaign at Manchester City on Thursday night and the importance of the FA Cup.

Read on for a summary of what the boss had to say…

On how he’s handled the players following Liverpool’s defeat at Manchester City…

After games, I think I am just realistic. I say what I have to say. The boys are too smart, so if I come in and say, ‘Everything is brilliant! Come on, it was a fantastic game, who cares about the points?’ it would be really silly and wouldn’t work. My assessment of the game was positive, of course – not about the result, but about the game. Was it perfect? No, so we have to talk about that. Could we have defended the second goal? Yes, with the last line higher up and stuff like that. There are things you can talk about, but can I expect always perfection? I would love to but sometimes it doesn’t work out. It is completely normal, I don’t have to make a big fuss of it if there is no real issue.

If we’d played really bad and lost 5-0 that would have for sure been different. This was the smallest difference result-wise you can get – you cannot lose with less than one goal. We lost with one goal, that can happen. We hit the post, they had to block two or three balls pretty much on their line, they were lucky in one or two situations, that’s how it is - and that was against Man City. It was not only positive, for sure not, but it was not only negative. We take it like it is and in a few moments, learn from it. There were moments where we can learn, 100 per cent – we could have calmed down the game a bit earlier, we could have started differently, that’s all clear but it’s just one football game.

The boys played – especially in the last month – outstanding football, so if I go in now after a game we lost and lose the plot completely, that would not be too cool. I am pretty similar after games; I don’t celebrate in the dressing room usually and it is really rare I shout around after games. Usually I take a day or a night at least to think about the things I saw and then I speak to the team. Sometimes I do it directly after the game – and at City I did it directly after the game. I was rather neutral rather than one or the other direction.

On whether Alberto Moreno will play at Wolves…

100 per cent, 100 per cent. Alberto is another example for being an unbelievable professional person and a really important part of the dressing room. He is from the positive side of the planet I would say. He is very often in very, very good shape, he loves training, loves playing and loves all these things and he is really good with all the boys. I can say Alberto will play as well, there is no doubt about that. He has to play, that’s clear.

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On taking a break from league action after a first defeat of the campaign…

I don’t think about things I can’t change too much. I don’t know, it’s OK, it’s like it is, we’ve known it for a while, so it’s not that I feel we have to react immediately in the league because that would feel a little bit like we are insecure about ourselves. We don’t know exactly how it will happen. When the draw came up and we saw Wolves it was like, ‘wow, thank you very much’ and it’s away. Then we played there and it was really difficult. Now we have to go there again and so it’s a really tough draw and nobody was looking forward to it and saying at the moment of the draw, ‘nice game, let’s go there and win’. We have Brighton to come after and it is always a tough place to go, they’ve had a fantastic season. Do I want play Brighton directly after Man City? I don’t know, I didn’t think about it. We have now between the Premier League games nine days or so, and in between is a very, very tough FA Cup game. I didn’t think about it, it’s OK like it is.

On the importance of the FA Cup…

How can we speak in the first round of the FA Cup about winning it? It is clear in the end the quarters and the semi-finals of the FA Cup are always unbelievably difficult, they are like Champions League games. It’s a very important competition, but we have to make sure we can play with the right intensity. For this you need – if you can do it - to make changes. To be honest, I don’t think Wolves will make changes, they have a very tuned team and I think [Nuno Espirito Santo] said already there is enough times between the games. We have to make a couple [of changes], so we will see. We want to win everything, but you cannot win it in the first game – you have to make sure you are as good as possible in that game, make the right decisions about the line-up – maybe tough decisions, maybe not that tough – and then we will see.

Again, it is always when people talk to me about silverware it always looks like we have to get each little thing. If we won the FA Cup then people would say that we didn’t win the Premier League for so many years. We cannot change what other people think. We have to try our best in every game we play and so far, not only this season but especially this season, that’s what the boys did – and that’s what we will try again and again and again and we will see what happens. I would say we had the toughest draw together with Chelsea in the first round of the League Cup. I don’t know all the others, but [other than] Bournemouth versus Brighton there is not a lot of all-Premier League ties. We have to think about the whole situation, not being like children and jumping always from one problem to the next problem – we have to consider all and that’s what we will do.

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Klopp assesses Hoever and Academy prospects' progress

Sat, 01/05/2019 - 14:40

Ki-Jana Hoever is the latest Academy prospect Jürgen Klopp has welcomed to Melwood with open arms.

A Netherlands youth international, Hoever recently followed the likes of Rafael Camacho, Curtis Jones and Adam Lewis in making the step up to train regularly with Liverpool’s first team.

The youngster - who joined the Reds from Ajax last year - is in Klopp’s thoughts for inclusion in his squad for Monday’s FA Cup third-round tie against Wolverhampton Wanderers, with the manager asked for an assessment of his progress during his pre-match press conference.

“He is one for the future of course but what we will do with him now for the game, I don’t know. But he’s one for the future, he’s 16 years old and turns 17 I think in a few days,” Klopp said.

“So that’s the thing, if Joel [Matip] and Joe [Gomez] would have been fit the whole time now, then probably Ki-Jana would not have been in training but now he was in and is still in and it is just a joy to watch him. 

“He’s an incredibly confident young fella and he is really a good player on top, so that’s nice. That we can see him now day in and day out that’s really cool. 

“Yes for sure [he is] for the future, [but] when the future starts I don’t know. But he is in and he learned a lot and he improves a lot [and] it will happen automatically. So it’s a nice prospect for the next months and years.”

Attacking midfielder Jones, meanwhile, is approaching the first anniversary of his maiden call-up to Melwood.

And Klopp believes that, like his fellow youngsters, the 17-year-old Scouser is benefitting greatly from being around the Reds’ senior players on a daily basis.

The boss continued: “Curtis is another good example, he’s just a fantastic player. He is now with us since February last year and it’s just brilliant to have them around.

“If you could see them every day then you would see how big the steps they make [are]. They are fantastic young professionals, really, included in an outstanding good group so their education in the dressing room is brilliant. 

“They see how you have to behave and how you can behave: show your football, be confident, be childish if you want in the right moments, that’s how it is and there is no problem - you don’t have to act like a 40-year-old guy. All these things, that’s what they learn. 

“Rafa Camacho is the same. We have a lot of these young boys constantly around and I’m really happy about that, but they have all the time in the world. They are really young and it is not about pushing them into a situation. 

“The good thing is that if one of these boys will play on Monday, then it is all my responsibility. They only have the opportunity to show up and play football and all the things that don’t work are my responsibility and my fault because then I made the wrong decision and they were not ready, that’s how it is. 

“But it would not be a problem for the future, only a problem for the moment. So they are here, in the right place and it’s absolutely nice to have them around.”

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Boss explains Solanke and Clyne transfer decision

Sat, 01/05/2019 - 14:06

Jürgen Klopp detailed the thinking behind the decision to allow Dominic Solanke and Nathaniel Clyne to leave Liverpool for Bournemouth on Friday.

The pair completed moves to the south-coast club yesterday, with Solanke departing the Reds on a permanent deal and Clyne on loan until the end of the current campaign.

Both players had found playing time difficult to come by so far in 2018-19 – and Klopp has explained why the choice was therefore made with Solanke and Clyne’s interests firmly in mind.

The manager told reporters at Melwood: “They are two different cases, obviously. Football is a business on the one hand side, and on the other side we have to care about people and their situation.

“For Dom, it was absolutely right to go. It was a bit unlucky for him in the moments when there was space for him, when it was easier to come into the team, that he had injuries. In the other moments, the squad was full and we had different options. He trained pretty well but you cannot stay confident over that long a period [without playing], especially not in his age group. He didn’t play a lot for Chelsea and so he needed to play football now.

“Bournemouth made a good offer to be honest, and for him it is a really good opportunity. Could there have been a moment in the next half year when the situation would have changed for him? Maybe, yes. In future we want to sign young players and keep young players here as well, but we don’t want to block them in the moment when maybe we can see something else could be better for them. That’s an important thing.

“With Clyney, it is difficult as a manager having an option like Clyney is good. When I came in, Clyney played, I don’t know exactly, but it felt like each game; he was always fit and could always play. He was a very important part of the squad and helped the team in that time.

“Then he got his injury, a back problem, which nobody knew in the beginning how long it would take. It took quite a while and in that time it changed in the team - Joe [Gomez] was fit, Trent [Alexander-Arnold] came up. Then, having Clyney still in is OK for a manager but for him, he is in an age where he has to play as well.

“He wants to play, that’s clear, so he came and asked if he can go. I thought about it and said then ‘yes, you can’ because we have options, other options, younger boys coming up and all that stuff.

“It is a similar situation. You can always keep a player, but to keep him in the right shape and with the right amount of confidence, that’s not always easy. They have to play more usually than Clyney did in the last two years.

“[That it is also] Bournemouth is more a coincidence than anything else.”

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Joe Gomez and Joel Matip injury update

Sat, 01/05/2019 - 13:37

Jürgen Klopp today provided a positive update on the recoveries of Joe Gomez and Joel Matip from injury, though neither player is available for selection for Monday’s FA Cup tie at Wolverhampton Wanderers.

Gomez has been sidelined since sustaining a fracture to his lower left leg during Liverpool’s 3-1 win at Burnley on December 5.

Matip, meanwhile, required surgery after picking up a fractured collarbone in the closing stages of the Reds’ Champions League encounter with Napoli at Anfield on December 11.

Klopp reported both players are making good progress in their rehabilitation programmes, but are still a little way off coming back into contention.

He told his pre-match press conference at Melwood: “[Joe is] getting better, it’s getting better, but he is not yet involved.

“Joel is maybe a bit closer, I’m not sure, but hopefully he moves completely normal. We have to see how the bone healing is, that’s always how it is when something [has] broke, but from his movements it looks nearly normal.

“But there are still a few days to go until we can have them in team training, until [Joel] is ready for contact, which for a centre-half is pretty important. Until then we will make all the fitness work.

“The good thing is Joel can do all the fitness work already since a week or so ago, so that means when he will be back he will be 100 per cent fit. Then he has to get rhythm and everything will be fine.”

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Simon Mignolet to start Wolves FA Cup tie

Sat, 01/05/2019 - 13:36

Simon Mignolet will start Liverpool's FA Cup third-round tie with Wolverhampton Wanderers, with Jürgen Klopp also planning to make other changes to his team.

Mignolet has made just one appearance so far this season, with Alisson Becker having assumed the mantle of the Reds' first-choice goalkeeper since his summer transfer from AS Roma.

But Klopp confirmed on Saturday that the Belgium international will be selected as one of a number of alterations to his line-up at Molineux on Monday.

"He will play, of course," the boss told his pre-match press conference.

"Yes, we have to [make changes]. That’s clear. We came through the intense period now somehow OK, but of course we have to make changes. How many I don’t know, but we have to. There is no chance for anything else." 

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Having announced his intention to start Mignolet, Klopp went on to speak in glowing terms about the 30-year-old's quality as well as his daily attitude and application at Melwood.

The manager continued: "Simon, I could write a book about all the good things I could say about him.

"I am not sure if you saw it in the Man City game, in the warm up, he had seven, eight incredible saves. I was not sure if I am happy about that - I thought ‘Come on, let them gain a bit of confidence!’, but he caught them from everywhere and that’s how he is. He is a fantastic professional and did brilliantly so far.

"Like all the boys who don’t play constantly week in and week out, they keep the level really high in training. Our ‘A versus B’ matches are unbelievable high quality.

"Si is a Premier League goalkeeper, everybody knows that, so I am really happy for him that he can have that game and it will be a difficult game on top [which is] maybe good for a goalie. He will have, I’m pretty sure, the opportunity to show up a few times."

The latest on Joe Gomez and Joel Matip's fitness>>

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Dejan Lovren: We'll stay calm and move forward

Sat, 01/05/2019 - 10:07

Dejan Lovren doesn’t believe a first defeat of the Premier League season will have an adverse psychological effect on Liverpool following Thursday’s 2-1 loss at Manchester City.

The Reds had their lead at the top of the table cut to four points by Pep Guardiola’s men after an intense clash at the Etihad Stadium which ended their unbeaten start to the 2018-19 top-flight campaign.

Nevertheless, Lovren feels Jürgen Klopp’s squad possess a strong mentality which will enable them to put the loss behind them and move on.

“The message [in the dressing room afterwards] was to stay calm,” the centre-back told reporters following the final whistle.

“There are many games in front of us, and we knew it was a big season and we are still first. Nothing changed.

“We need to stay calm, keep our focus game by game and do not look back. When we win or we lose, we will not look back.

“People already questioned us even before the season, even now they said this game was already the title. It doesn't work in football like that. It is game by game, let us see at the end of the season where we will finish.

“But I don't think this will change anything. No, we are quite strong, strong in the mentality.

“This is Liverpool, we will always come back when it's tough. And you know it is tough after the final whistle, but it is over, finished, we can't change it.

“We will accept that and congratulate Manchester City – but the season is quite long and I believe in this team.”

Liverpool had chances to salvage something from the contest with City – most notably when Sadio Mane struck the post with the scoreline tied at 0-0 in the first half and John Stones subsequently prevented the ball from crossing the line by a millimetre.

"For them it is a big win, when you look we have been undefeated this season until now,” Lovren continued.

"It is similar to last season, just opposite sides, when we won against them for the first time.

"The dropped deep in the last 10 to 15 minutes, we couldn't find a way. It's a first defeat in the league but we played good football, especially second half. We showed our ability to come back, but it wasn't enough.

"We need to accept that this is what it is. Just like when we have been winning this season, we keep calm now that we lost. We stick together and we will continue."

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Vicky Jepson column: Brighton test and 2019 hopes

Sat, 01/05/2019 - 09:00

In her latest column, Liverpool FC Women manager Vicky Jepson looks ahead to 2019 and Sunday's home game against Brighton and Hove Albion Women FC in the Women’s Super League.

First of all, I would like to wish all our loyal and brilliant supporters a very happy 2019 and I hope you all had a fantastic Christmas. We can’t wait to get going again as we face Brighton at Tranmere Rovers on Sunday afternoon in our first game of the new year. We need to improve our home form to be honest because we’ve only won one game all season at home, so we want to put that right in this fresh new year. We also know Brighton will be tough opposition so we will have to be fully ready. They will come here well prepared and will be difficult to break down, so we are going to have our wits about us to take three points from them on the day.

We can’t wait to get out there on the pitch once again on Sunday. We had a disappointing end to 2018 when we lost to Everton in the Continental Tyres Cup and it was the first 20 minutes of the game that cost us. It was heart-breaking and there are no excuses for the first 20 minutes of that game. We had played four games in two weeks and physically it was difficult for us, especially with the injuries we have had, but we should have performed a lot better. We have given some youth players an opportunity which is great and Lauren Thomas got a run-out at Reading.

Free video: Watch the latest LFC Women Show

Back in September we had a good win away at Brighton when Rinsola Babajide scored the only goal five minutes from time. It was a difficult game for us and they created chances. We sat in and caught them when the game got a little bit stretched. The big thing on Sunday is we don’t go into this game thinking we are going to get the three points just because we beat them earlier in the season. We are going to have to work hard and we’ve certainly done our homework in terms of the game plan. I just hope we can get ourselves back to winning ways.

Courtney Sweetman-Kirk has become a really important player for us and has scored some brilliant goals. I was delighted to see her goal at Reading included in the Liverpool FC Goal of the Month poll for December. Courtney has really stood out for me. Not just with the goals she has scored, but it’s her application and her work-rate too. She has been a real leader on the pitch and it was a time when we were up against a momentum of losses which is not easy for any team to go through. It tests people’s characters and one thing Courtney did is step up to the plate for us. I’ve been really pleased with Courtney, in training as well her attitude, it has been second to none and hopefully she continues that in the new year and gets a few more goals under her belt.

On the injury front, we will have Niamh Charles back sooner rather than later in the next month which will be brilliant for us. We have certainly missed her. We will also have Ashley Hodson back which will be another big boost for us. Ash played her first 30 minutes a in a behind closed doors game this week and will play again for the development squad later this month. It’s been a long time out for Ash but she has worked so hard and she will be back before you know it.

On Sunday we will have our fans right behind the dugout in the Paddock which is brilliant as we can hear them even more and it really does inspire the girls. We would love to have as many supporters present at Prenton Park on Sunday and you would be most welcome.

Thanks so much for your support

Vicky

Kick-off on Sunday at Prenton Park is at 2pm GMT.

Season ticket holders for Liverpool FC and Tranmere Rovers FC, as well as LFC Members, can gain free entrance to the fixture.

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Watch Klopp's Wolves press conference live and free

Sat, 01/05/2019 - 08:00

Jürgen Klopp will host his pre-Wolverhampton Wanderers press conference from 1pm GMT today – and you can watch it live and free with us.

Liverpool begin their FA Cup campaign with a third-round tie against their fellow Premier League side at Molineux on Monday night.

See everything Klopp has to say about the fixture, the latest condition of his squad and other Reds-related topics via our free YouTube stream of the press conference from Melwood.

Access it by returning to this page shortly before the 1pm start time.

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Nathaniel Clyne joins Bournemouth on loan

Fri, 01/04/2019 - 17:59

Liverpool defender Nathaniel Clyne has completed a loan move to Bournemouth for the remainder of the season.

The 27-year-old will spend the second half of 2018-19 with the Premier League side having agreed terms with the Cherries today.

Clyne played five times for the Reds before the New Year, including starts against Chelsea and Manchester United at Anfield.

The latter marked the No.2’s 100th Liverpool appearance since joining the club from Southampton in the summer of 2015.

He follows Dominic Solanke in moving to the Vitality Stadium after the striker sealed a permanent transfer earlier on Friday.

Eddie Howe’s Bournemouth are 12th in the Premier League.

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Dominic Solanke seals permanent move to Bournemouth

Fri, 01/04/2019 - 15:59

Dominic Solanke has sealed a permanent transfer to Bournemouth.

The 21-year-old moves to the Premier League side after an 18-month spell with Liverpool, during which the striker made 27 appearances for the first team.

Solanke opened his goalscoring account for the Reds in the final league game of last season, a 4-0 victory over Brighton and Hove Albion at Anfield.

The U20 World Cup winner will now take a new step in his career after completing the formalities of a switch to Eddie Howe’s Bournemouth.

Everybody at LFC thanks Dom for his contribution to the Reds and wishes him the best of luck for the future.

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Brighton v Liverpool: Ticket update

Fri, 01/04/2019 - 15:00

Liverpool have issued a ticket update for the Premier League fixture against Brighton and Hove Albion at the Amex Stadium on Saturday January 12, kick-off 3pm.

A limited number of tickets remain and will be available online to Season Ticket Holders, Official Members and Fan Card Holders based on attendance at Premier League away fixtures during Season 2017-18:

The below sales will take place online only.

Attendance at 10 games: From 11am until 1.45pm on Monday January 7.

Only in the event tickets remain:

Attendance at nine games: From 2pm on Monday January 7 until 10.45am on Tuesday January 8.

Attendance at eight games: From 11am until 1.45pm on Tuesday January 8.

Attendance at seven games: From 2pm on Tuesday January 8.

Supporters can purchase one ticket per person up to a maximum of four tickets per transaction.

Tickets are subject to availability and are allocated on a first come first served basis. We cannot guarantee that tickets will be available to all who apply.

For further information before travelling, please click here.

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Vote Salah to win PFA Premier League Player of the Month

Fri, 01/04/2019 - 15:00

Mohamed Salah is on the six-man shortlist for the PFA Premier League Player of the Month award for December – and you can help the Liverpool forward win the prize.

The Egyptian scored six league goals for the Reds throughout the month as the Reds won every match and moved clear at the top of the division.

Salah is up against Eden Hazard (Chelsea), Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur), Ricardo Pereira (Leicester City), Paul Pogba and Marcus Rashford (both Manchester United) for the accolade, which is voted for by fans.

Click here to back the Liverpool No.11 now.

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