|still not available for selection..ME & Stevie !! ;)|
|Yoda, impersonating ChriS ;)|
Bill Shankly -
'The socialism I believe in is not really politics; it is humanity, a way of living and sharing the rewards'
Kenny Dalglish today admitted Lucas Leiva's injury has come as a blow – but insisted Liverpool have a squad capable of dealing with his absence.
it was confirmed by Liverpoolfc.tv on Thursday afternoon that the Brazil midfielder's season was over after he sustained an anterior cruciate ligament injury during Tuesday's win at Chelsea. While disappointed by the news, Dalglish is confident he has a number of players at his disposal who can step up to the challenge of replicating Lucas's role within the team. He told a press conference at Melwood: "It's a huge disappointment for everybody, but more importantly for Lucas.
"He's had the scan, they'll assess it and decide which is the best place for him to go and where he is most comfortable in and then they'll go and do what they have to do.
"He's been playing well for us but it is just part and parcel of football I suppose.
"We'd rather have him there or thereabouts, but we don't have him. We've called Jonjo (Shelvey) back from Blackpool just to give us a bit of cover and we've got plenty of people in and around the place. "We're not the only club that's got an injury. We've said we've got a strong squad and things like this are unfortunately when you get tested.
We've been happy with the squad - I think the results so far reflect that.
"Steven (Gerrard) is still progressing really well, without putting a date on when he'll be back, so we've just got to manage it. At the same time, we've got a great deal of sympathy for Lucas." Dalglish added: "We've got adequate replacements and if we need somebody we'll have a look, but I don't think we need anybody." News of Lucas's injury was met with disappointment from all connected with the club. The No.21 had been in excellent form so far in 2011-12, leading Jamie Carragher to today claim he had been just as influential as Luis Suarez this term.
"I think it states Jamie's opinion," said Dalglish. "Lucas had been playing really well, and we're disappointed for him that he's picked up an injury. "It's not career threatening - although it's not helpful for ourselves or Lucas - but we've just got to get on with it and accept it. "Lucas isn't walking about feeling sorry for himself, we can do that - we can feel sorry for him. But we can't feel sorry for ourselves either. We've got plenty of people who won't let us down.
"You saw at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday night there were a lot of good performances."
He continued: "We'd much rather have him fit than injured, but we've got a strong squad and there are people in the squad who can step in. "We have to accommodate injuries, suspensions and everything else you get in football. Unfortunately for us, Lucas is at this moment in time injured. We have to accommodate that and handle it."
Having recalled Jonjo Shelvey from Blackpool, one journalist quizzed Dalglish on whether he would consider doing similar with Alberto Aquilani, who is currently on loan at AC Milan. "I think if you look at the rules you'll find it's not possible," he replied.
Apart from Lucas, Dalglish confirmed he has no fresh injury concerns to contend with ahead of Monday night's trip to Fulham with Steven Gerrard and Jack Robinson Liverpool's only other absentees. "Everybody seems to be fine," stated the boss.
I would have liked this..if HODGSON was their manager,,,
10-0 v fulham///
Kenny Dalglish today explained why he believes Tuesday's commanding 2-0 victory over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge may have given him a few selection dilemmas to contend with.
The Reds made seven changes for the Carling Cup quarter-final tie, but were comfortable winners on the night to set up a last-four meeting with Manchester City. Dalglish was left delighted by the determination of the players who stepped into the team and took their chance with both hands.
He told his pre-Fulham press conference at Melwood: "The strength of your squad is the ability of the ones who don't play as often as the others. "There are some of the lads who started the other night who would like to have played more often than they have done, but there is strong opposition here for places. It's great credit to them they can go out and put in a fantastic performance like that.
"It does make it more difficult (to select a team), but it makes it more pleasant as well when you watch them play." He added: "It's never easy to leave anybody out. They train all week and want to play, but until somebody allows us to put 20 on the pitch we're going to have a problem.
"All they can do - and they've done it to their great credit - is keep themselves fit and prepared. If they keep themselves prepared, they give themselves the best opportunity of impressing - and they certainly were impressive on Tuesday night. "I don't get any enjoyment out of leaving anybody out of the team. You can sympathise with them if they're disappointed - but then you'd be disappointed if they weren't disappointed." The likes of Jay Spearing, Sebastian Coates and Martin Kelly were amongst several stand-out performers at the Bridge, but Dalglish was never in any doubt the fringe members of his squad would rise to the occasion.
He said: "We trust every one of them. We believe in them and will stand by them. As long as they go out there and give what they have got to give then fine. They should never be left wanting for a lack of effort.
"Everyone will make a mistake, we ourselves make mistakes and we've got a week to prepare for the game. They've got a spontaneous decision to make - they won't always make the right one but as long as their heart is in the right place, we'll stand by every single one of the players."
Dalglish continued: "Some of the lads who haven't played as often as the other boys, it's more difficult for them than the ones who are playing all the time. For them to keep their spirits and desire up is a great compliment to them they have done that. "Tuesday we made seven changes and there is not one of them who let themselves or us down in any way, shape or form and that's the thing that is going to keep us going - the momentum and strong dressing room we have.
"If they're enjoying coming to work, they're going to work and train harder, and produce good performances. They've done that."
Victory over Chelsea means Liverpool will now take on Manchester City in the semi-finals of the Carling Cup in the New Year. Dalglish, however, is refusing to look beyond the Reds' next task - a trip to Fulham on Monday night. He said: "We've got Fulham on Monday, so we'll just look forward to that. We got our reward for beating Chelsea at Stamford Bridge and we're in the semi-final of the Cup. We accept that and we accept who we've got to play. "When it gets closer to the game, when it's our next immediate one, then we can start to concentrate on it."
Fulham head into the weekend 15th in the Barclays Premier League table having appointed Martin Jol as their new manager in the summer. Last season, Craven Cottage was the scene of one of Liverpool's finest displays of the campaign when they ran out 5-2 winners in May, but Dalglish knows the Cottagers will provide a tough test.
He said: "Fulham have done well. It's difficult when there's a change in management and obviously that's their third one in a short space of time. Roy (Hodgson) was there first, then Mark Hughes came in and now Martin Jol is in.
"Martin is a good coach, so I'm sure they'll respond well to his thoughts. Sometimes it takes a little bit of time to put your own thoughts into the team, but Fulham are very good at home and very unlucky against Spurs in a game I saw there.
"We know it's going to be a very difficult game. We also know we went there and won 5-2 last year, but we got our reward for that by getting three points. We'll only get what we deserve from the game and the effort we put in on Monday night. "It's the same every time we go to play a game - they're always going to be difficult games - but at the moment I think we're making it difficult for other teams as well." Liverpool will aim to maintain an unbeaten run which now stretches to 11 matches when they make the journey south.
A strong finish to matches has characterised the Reds' displays during that sequence, and Dalglish believes that is a result of the hard work being done at Melwood. "Everything that comes out in a game is a reflection of what you've done in the lead up to it, whether it's two or three days or two or three months," he said. "The players have always trained very well and we've been delighted with their approach on and off the pitch. If you train well, you'll last the pace better and we've certainly not had a problem with fitness for anyone of our players. It's a credit to them as well as the coaching staff, Steve (Clarke) and Kevin (Keen), as well as the fitness people.
"You only get out of life what you put into it and I think the same applies to football.
"I don't think there is any one of our players who lack fitness or desire. We've got the best of both worlds and it would be very difficult to analyse which is the greater component - fitness or desire. We're happy we've got both of them in abundance in our players. "They also start games quickly as well and the tempo of their play is quite high." Liverpool's last Barclays Premier League outing resulted in a 1-1 draw against table-toppers Manchester City at Anfield.
The Reds won plenty of plaudits for an impressive display - but Dalglish is adamant there is more to come. "We're never going to be happy with a draw against anybody - we're happy with wins," said the gaffer.
"We were delighted with the way we played, but I think we set our standards a little bit higher than drawing against people. I think we deserve better than that, I think we are better than that, and it's up to us to stand up and be counted and start winning games.
"We've done fantastically well and in most of the games we've played at home, I think we should have come away with three points. To their credit (the players') their performances have been top notch. "We'll continue preaching the same philosophy and eventually it is going to come good. As we've said before, if everybody sticks together we've got a better chance of being successful."
Author: James Carroll at Melwood
Fulham v Liverpool
Premier League, Monday 6th December 2011
Liverpool travel to Craven Cottage to face Fulham in the Monday night fixture.
This fixture last season saw the Reds come away emphatic winners, with
Maxi Rodriguez grabbing a hat-trick. at the end of last season, will b hard to exclude tonight & Luis is due a goal..
• Fulham became the first team since October 2nd to prevent Robin van Persie from scoring in a Barclays Premier League game with their 1-1 draw at Craven Cottage.
• Dickson Etuhu covered most ground for Fulham in that game with 6.88 miles, while Clint Dempsey has the highest average ground covered per game for Fulham 6.83 miles per game.
• Chris Baird made a terrific goal line clearance to foil van Persie. Baird has averaged 6.11 miles per game this season for Fulham, and made an incredible 43 interceptions (the third highest in the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index).
• Mark Schwarzer put in a vintage performance to keep Arsenal at bay. The Australian ‘keeper has made 80 saves so far this season, second behind Wolves’ Wayne Hennessy for saves made.
• Liverpool gave league leaders Man City perhaps their toughest test to date in their 1-1 draw in their last Barclays Premier League outing.
covered the most ground for Liverpool in that game with 6.85 miles.
• Adam also has the highest average distance covered per game at Liverpool with 6.81 miles, ahead of Leiva Lucas with 6.78 miles.
Charlie Adam’s shot was diverted in for Lescott’s own goal, and the midfielder also tested Joe Hart in the second half. Adam has hit 14 shots on target this season, 64% of those attempted.
• Adam has also contributed six assists and delivered 28 crosses.
• Jose Reina is the 5th ranked goalkeeper in the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index having made 54 saves so far this season and conceded 12 goals, averaging 4.5 saves per goal conceded.
FA CUp draw....
Charlie Adam will tonight do battle with the midfielder who provided his sternest test during his sparkling season with Blackpool.
Fulham captain Danny Murphy will line up against his former club at Craven Cottage and our No.26 is expecting a tough night as the Reds look to make it 12 games unbeaten. Speaking at one of the club's Equality 4 All coaching sessions, where he held a Q&A with young aspiring footballers, Adam told Liverpoolfc.tv: "People still rate Danny quite highly at this club and that's because he is a top player.
"Danny is a very, very good player and the two games I played against him for Blackpool last season were probably the two most difficult games I had." London has been fairly kind to Kenny Dalglish's charges so far with away successes at Chelsea (twice) and Arsenal.
Adam is hoping the Reds can continue their good form on the road and three points at Craven Cottage would see them equal a proud club record of seven successive victories away from home in all competitions.
"Wherever you go in this league away from home you know it's going to be difficult, but if we can go to the capital and pick up points like we have been doing then that's important," said the Scottish international. "We have done very well against Arsenal and Chelsea twice, so hopefully we can do that again against Fulham.
"Our performance against Manchester City, which we should have won, and Chelsea in midweek showed we are heading in the right direction.
"It will be an open game. Fulham have got a good manager and a good team but if we can perform like the lads did towards the end of last season, then we are confident we can get the right result and that is a victory." Last season Maxi Rodriguez stole the headlines with a hat-trick against the Cottagers - his second in succession. Adam is backing the Argentine ace to find the net again.
"We were talking about that with Maxi the other day and he's scored 10 goals in his last nine starts which is fantastic," he said.
"We'd take another hat-trick from the wee man on Monday if he's selected, which would be nice. As long as he doesn't do that dance again though like he did at Chelsea we'll be happy!" Adam also gave his reaction to the Carling cup draw which saw the Reds paired with Manchester City in a two-legged semi-final.
"They are going to be two special matches," he said. "The good thing for us is the second leg is at home and already I think that game is going to be like a hampions League night at Anfield. "As soon as the draw was made I felt that game at Anfield was going to be like the atmosphere at a Champions League game. It will be terrific and hopefully we can do well in the first leg to make that happen.
"Manchester City are a top team. They have been the best so far and that's why they are top of the league, but it's over two legs. It's going to be difficult but at Anfield last week I thought we more than matched them, and at times played some terrific football and should have won the game.
"Even at Chelsea on Tuesday night we had over 3,000 fans down in London supporting us, and coming so soon after the City game that showed why this club is one of the very best in the world. "Hopefully we can reward them with the right performances and right results over the two legs."
Author: Steve Hunter
Kenny Dalglish admits Maxi Rodriguez is making himself difficult to omit with his incredible goalscoring feats.
The Argentine has netted 10 goals in his last nine starts - a record that includes a hat-trick at tonight's opponents Fulham. The 30-year-old has not been a regular in the first XI this season but Dalglish claims he is never far from his thoughts. I'm tempted to play Maxi in every game," said the Scot. "He has a fantastic recent goalscoring record. He is an intelligent footballer and he must have been some player five years ago when he was in his prime. "He might be getting a bit towards my age now but he is still a clever player. He knows how to play and he knows how to finish.
"Maxi is someone that you admire. A lot of people can look at him and also learn from him. Maxi and Bellers, along with Carra, are the elder statesmen. The way they look after themselves, the way they train and the way they prepare themselves, they are a great example to everybody.
"Maxi's just an intelligent footballer who understands the game on and off the pitch. The same as everybody should do. The squad is more important than the individual.
"If they are given an opportunity, there's not one of them that won't go on to the pitch and do their best. That's all we can ask for. Maxi epitomises that. He has made a contribution."
Author: Jimmy Rice
MUCH more at REDnET..