Did You Know!

City have won only once in their last 23 league visits. That came in May 2003 when Nicolas Anelka scored twice in a 2-1 win. Since that victory they have lost 7 and drawn 4 of the meetings at Anfield.

Milner he must cut wage demands

Liverpool tell Manchester City’s James Milner he must cut wage demands to seal Anfield transfer

Don't be greedy! Liverpool tell transfer target to SLASH wage demands

Liverpool have told James Milner he will have to slash his wage demands if he wants to seal a summer move to Anfield.

The England midfielder is out of contract at Manchester City at the end of the season and Brendan Rodgers is keen to bring in the 29-year-old on a free transfer.

However, the Daily Express are reporting that Milner wants Liverpool to match the £120,000 a week wages he is on at the Etihad – something Liverpool say they are not prepared to do.

The former Aston Villa, Leeds United and Newcastle midfielder has been offered a new deal at City but is reluctant to sign it as he wants more guaranteed playing time.

Teixeira Not Ruling Out Permanent Liverpool Move

Joao Carlos Teixeira 5120__7756__131021-u21wbalfc7was interviewed by the Official Site ahead of the game against Bolton Wanderers this weekend and he talked about how his loan spell with us so far had gone, and talked briefly about what could lie ahead in his future.

Starting with his experience with us so far, he explained that the loan move was obviously to get games under his belt and he’d been delighted to feature in 27 games so far, especially as 22 had been from the start and he clearly enjoyed his goal return of 6 so far as well.

‘When I came here the main thing was to play, improve my game and help the team. I’ve improved a lot, I’m a different player, more confident and I’ve got Championship experience. Right now things are great and I want to keep these levels until the end of the season. I feel stronger than the start of the season and I’ve been improving on my defensive side and I’m trying to improve every game.’

Adding that the best way to improve is by playing games and playing regularly and he feels he’s doing an ‘all right job’ for us at the minute so he wants that to continue – especially with the wins we are picking up.

‘I’m enjoying my time at Brighton a lot right now.’

With his contract at his parent club having a year left to run, the Portuguese under 21 international also wouldn’t rule out a permanent move to the club if things don’t work out for him at Liverpool – although he’s honest enough to say he’s obviously hoping it does work out for him.

‘It’s really difficult because Liverpool are a big club with great players, but you dream of playing Premier League football with Liverpool. I really want that and I’m going to work for it but you never know what’s going to happen in the future. Of course I would see Brighton as an option, I like everything here. I like the city and it’s really nice living here. The facilities are great, the training ground is new, the stadium is brilliant and the fans always fill the stadium so it’s great.’

He goes on to say though that the only thing he can think about at the moment is the ‘now’ though and that means focusing on each upcoming game and ensuring he continues to improve, and do his best for us and we continue looking for more victories and three points to lift us further away from the relegation zone.

Balo wearing Luis’s shins

Looking for magic? Mario Balotelli asks to wear Luis Suarez’s shin pads!

Mario-Balotelli-Luis-Suarez

Mario Balotelli is so desperate to start scoring regularly for Liverpool, that he’s turned to former Reds star Luis Suarez – who scored 31 goals last season – as a source of inspiration.

Reports in the Daily Mirror have revealed that the Italian, who has only managed four goals in 23 games since his £16m summer move from AC Milan, recently discovered Suarez’s old shin pads, and has now asked to wear them.

Suarez joined Barcelona in a £75m deal last summer, but forgot to take his protective wear with him when he left. Learning of their availability, Balotelli decided to call the Uruguayan to ask if he could use them in a match.

According to the source, Suarez was only too delighted to agree. An insider told the Mirror: “Luis was in great form and only too happy to help when he received the call from Mario.”

Balotelli will be hoping to get the chance to shine later today, when the Reds face his former club – Manchester City – in the Premier League. A win could see us further close the gap on Champions League places, and move level on points with Arsenal in fourth place.

MLS for Balotelli

Mario Balotelli could quit Liverpool for shock MLS switch

LIVERPOOL striker Mario Balotelli could end up at MLS outfit Orlando City this summer.

mario balotelli
The Italy international has been in poor form under Brendan Rodgers after completing a £16m switch from AC Milan last summer.

Balotelli was linked with a loan move away from Anfield in the winter transfer window, but decided to remain on Merseyside in an effort to prove his worth.

However, the return of Daniel Sturridge and the emergence of Raheem Sterling in a more advanced role has made the 24-year-old’s place at the club redundant.

And reports today claim that American giants Orlando are keen to bring Balotelli across the Atlantic to link up with former Milan teammate Kaka.Whether the former Manchester City star fancies plying his trade in a lower league remains to be seen, but it has been claimed that he will struggle to find a new European club at the end of the season due to his bad performances on the pitch.

Divock Origi is set to return to Liverpool following his loan spell with Lille, meaning that Balotelli may have little say in the matter if he wants to be playing regular first-team football.

Interesting read

Courtesy of The Guardian

European results expose the Premier League’s true level

Poor performances from Arsenal, Liverpool and Tottenham proved English football is perhaps not the all-conquering beast some believe it to be.

 

Arsène Wenger was unusually severe in his criticism of Arsenal’s shortcomings in the wake of the 3-1 humbling by Monaco, though it was a French coach still living and working in France who provided the pithiest assessment of a bad week for Premier League teams in Europe.

René Girard is coach of Lille, mid‑table in Ligue 1 and not even involved in any European action this past week, and from the sound of it he has had enough of exaggerated claims about the quality of football across the Channel. “To those who say our league is shit, it proves there’s perhaps shit elsewhere as well,” Girard said of Monaco’s result, and that was before Liverpool and Tottenham made their Europa League exits.

Is the Premier League really that bad? Most people are reasonably happy with what they see and the television money pouring in suggests overseas markets lap up the product as well, though for several years now, since the high points of English teams reaching the Champions League final five years in succession a decade ago and providing half the last eight in 2008 and 2009, European competition has shown that the richest league in the world does not produce the strongest teams.

It does not require much imagination to understand that other leagues are resentful of the wealth of English clubs, especially if it is perceived to be undeserved, if the now prodigious income is being channelled into a demonstrably inferior product.

Even people in this country seem to love the idea of the so-called greatest league in the world being exposed as second-rate, except that it is never the easiest task to find out who does bill the Premier League so grandly. For the money they spend Sky are probably entitled to make immodest boasts, though beyond the sales pitch the situation is a little more complicated.

No one with any sense would dispute that the best teams in the world can usually be found in La Liga, or that when it comes to producing and retaining home-grown talent Germany and Spain are out on their own. The unique selling point England can offer is a more competitive league, a domestic programme where games are often eventful and results unpredictable. While one only has to watch Match of the Day most weeks to know that this is a successful and entertaining formula, the possibility has long existed that English football is as insular as geography would suggest, operating convincingly within its own vacuum but withering on contact with the outside world.

Certainly since the post-Heysel ban English clubs have generally been playing catch-up in Europe, and what appeared progress a few years ago was more a case of two disparate threads coming together. One was the empire Sir Alex Ferguson built, after taking years to come to terms with European football Manchester United finally found the right blueprint and stuck with it, even if it never did run to matching Barcelona. The other was the importation of continental coaches and methods, with Wenger showing the way but Rafa Benítez and José Mourinho quickly making a mark.

Superficially, much of the non‑performance in Europe this year can be put down to the demise of United. That is one of the Premier League major players out of the equation, and while Manchester City have made enormous strides on the domestic front their European progress has been painfully slow.

Arsenal have been standing still for some time, despite cosmetic adornments in Mesut Özil and Alexis Sánchez, while Liverpool and Spurs appear to be suffering from the same sort of stagefright that afflicts City in Europe. A word of praise is due for Everton, still flying the flag in the Europa League and now faced with difficult opponents in Kiev, but it is no coincidence that Chelsea, with Mourinho back at the helm, look likely to go furthest in Europe.

Chelsea do not produce their own players, none of the leading clubs in England do, though Mourinho is a great team builder and transfer market operator with a proven record against high-calibre opponents. In the rest of the English game, that is not true any more. Arsenal have lost any edge they once had, even Manuel Pellegrini admits City still keep making the same mistakes, while United have spent £150m and are still in the wilderness.

There is, it has to be admitted, an impermanence to English football that its riches cannot mask, if indeed the huge amounts of easy money are not actually contributing to the problem. Why should Manchester United, one of the most successful clubs in the world in recent years, require a period of grace to get over a change of manager?

For the same reason, presumably, that Arsenal tolerate slow decline under Wenger for fear of what might come next. Money is around to patch up most problems so there is never a need to look too far below the surface and worry about sustainability or self-sufficiency, just as it is convenient to ignore the reality that expensive acquisitions such as Özil and Sánchez, not to mention Cesc Fàbregas and Ángel di María, were all deemed surplus to requirements by their previous Spanish clubs.

If the rest of Europe sees the Premier League as part cash cow, part retirement home for overpaid cast-offs, it is difficult to mount a defence. Not when the last significant homegrown contribution was the Class of 92 and the only prize for attacking ingenuity since Wenger’s Arsenal peaked would have gone to Liverpool, all too briefly, around this time last season.

English teams take a lot out of each other when they meet in domestic fixtures. It is the basic honesty of the competition that is admired around the world and the Premier League could well be the hardest one to win. For that reason alone it seems fair that England stands second (above Germany and Italy) in Uefa’s coefficient ranking, even if the table is based on form in Europe and further poor results could eventually see the Champions League quota cut from four clubs to three.

While there is no immediate danger of that, warning lights are flashing. English clubs have more than enough money to invest in their own future, it is about time they came up with something more substantial.

Where we are at!

Man City’s have a new £200m academy which to put in perspective is double the amount of money we are spending on our whole Anfield stadium refurbishment.

0019_-_manchester_city_academy_july_2013Their Academy is supported by a new global scouting system and talent is being diverted from other clubs in the UK in this area. Entrants into the system receive a free private education until 16 whether they make the grade or not.

City are building up their fan base and will be able to mitigate the impact of FFP by bringing in new home grown talent.

In the meantime we are developing the Anfield main stand at a cost we recouperated from TV revenue last season.

Just another episode in the life of LFC under corporate owners. We are well and truly being left behind.

Pretty woeful if you ask me.

Xabi suggest’s midfielder for Liverpool

Xabi Alonso has suggested that Liverpool should look into signing Asier Illarramendi…

Elche FC v Real Madrid CF - La LigaFormer Liverpool midfielder Xabi Alonso has suggested that Brendan Rodgers should consider Real Madrid’s defensive midfielder Asier Illarramendi, if he decides to strengthen that area of his team this summer.

Arsenal are leading the chase for the 24-year-old – who has started just three league games so far this season – but Alonso’s tip off could cause Rodgers to make a rival bid.

Did You Know!

Liverpool have won more points in their last nine games than in the opening 17 matches of this campaign and that City have won only once in their last 23 league visits to Anfield.

Hmmm hopeful!

Origi “not giving his all”

Speaking at a press conference ahead of Lille’s weekend encounter with Lyon, manager Rene Girard commented on the recent performances of Belgian striker Divock Origi.

Divock-Origi“We sometimes forget how young a player he is. Sometimes it is good that he misses a match. One thinks that he feels already at Liverpool. That he is not giving his all. Also, Liverpool came for him again during the winter transfer window. That is not easy to cope with. But I am still sure that he is not at 100%.”

Clubs breakaway on the cards

Well then FIFA have finally pushed one button too many.

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Fifa’s announcement that the Qatar 2022 World Cup will be played in winter has infuriated clubs.

There is now gathering moss for the big clubs to break away and run their own affairs.

Chairman Karl-Heinze Rummenigge calls for the likes of Real Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern Munich Manchesters City, United, Chelsea, Arsenal, Spurs and Liverpool to break out and ditch FIFA.

One club director said “We’re very angry about being rode roughshod over by Fifa on this.

“It’s European clubs who invest billions in players and their wages and that should give us a voice.

“Instead we’re told to put up and shut up and that’s why there’s a will to challenge Fifa.”

It’s definately gathering momentum and something has to give. Anything that gets rid of these Quango’s such as FIFA I’m in!

The FA next!

 

The Premier League is set to self destruct

Oh dear, what was once a working mans sport is now on a course for complete annihilation.

I vividly remember standing on the Kop stuck in a throng of swaying voices before I had children and progressed to the main stand with boxes for the kids to stand on right in front of Bob Paisley.

Bob always said hello to the kids. I guess the point I make is that there’s not a chance of that home from home feeling nowadays.

I had a poor paying job yet I could still afford the entrance money for me and two boys. All you fans that take a couple of lads to the match will not be able to identify with that today.

What have they done to our game?

The blame has to be apportioned to many ….

The FA for being so greedy

The advent of foreign owners

The appearance of players agents

The TV companies

The sponsors

Foreign players

Players wages.

I see the biggest killer is the fact that players no longer allign themselves to certain clubs. How on earth could a player from say Spain feel an alliance to a local club. This situation has steadily grown worse and is totally detrimental to the England national team. players these day are extremely mercenary even with clubs that have brought them through. Manchester City are a prime example. Then there is Chelsea who if you are in their academy have not a hope of playing for their first team. This cannot be good for English football.

The FA also are selling the soul of the game for a pot of gold. They would have all clubs playing seven days a week if they could yet they totally ignore grass roots with thousands of pitches in the Sunday league’s in a disgraceful state. Another example of creaming the pot.

Foreign club owners were never heard of and clubs like Liverpool were solely owned by local businessmen such as the Moore’s family. As soon as the first club went into foreign hands then the flood gates opened not because they wanted to be part of the local club but 100% they wanted profit and saw the PL as a cash cow. As a Liverpool supporter I simply cannot identify with these American owners who have a board to keep happy by generating more profits.

Players agents are another leech on the game. Liverpool alone paid £12m in agent fees last term. Think about that because all these profits for the fat cats comes from your pockets. When a sponsor such as our present shirt sponsors ‘Warrior’ pays say £20m, where does that money come from? yep by selling you their shirts.

I maintain that the Premier League is squeezing fans to the brink and that soon a revolution will take place. What a thought it would be to have our local game back in the fans hands. To get shut of all the fat cats and the leeches that are continually sucking the beautiful game dry.

We are all being treated like duh brains and in fact that is exactly what we are if we allow this situation to continue.

No player on earth is worth £10k a week for playing a game he loves. The funny part is that you the fans are totally brainwashed by agreeing to these fees and even saying well its Messi and he’s worth it!  Think about 10 grand a week and put it into perspective now get your head around £150k week – Have we all gone mad?

Why English clubs are crap abroad

Ok here is an overview of what all the leading European sporting media think is the reason for poor showing by English clubs abroad.

Spain – Money without ideas is useless

The prestige of the Premier League is superior to its quality. The main problem is that the coaches are not good enough, from the grass roots to the elite.

Diego Torres, El Pai­s

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Italy – Grass roots is biggest problem

The biggest problem in England is grass-roots football, there is not a great system of developing tactics at that level. We think of the Premier League as a collection of great stars but with no identity. There is no defined style in England any more.

Filippo Ricci, Gazzetta dello Sport

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France – Winter break is a no-brainer

It’s very often at this time of the year that your players get tired but England has to have a winter break. If England had a winter break, not only would your international team be better as well, but I think you would have won more Champions League titles than you have. It’s an absolute no-brainer. Players need to rest like everybody else.

Julien Laurens, Le Parisien

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Belgium – More cautious approach required

Maybe the Premier League is a victim of its open, spectacular games. They do everything to win a game. Maybe in Europe you just have to take a more cautious approach. The Premier League, they always boast, is the best league in the world. Maybe it’s just the best brand.

Kristof Terreur, HLN

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Germany – New TV deal leaves rivals behind

The Premier League is still the richest. It surprised me how the English teams are doing in Europe so far. They will make the first £100 million signing and they will be able to give money to players that no other team can spend. A friend of mine said the Champions League is for the champions, but if you want to know what’s going on in the whole league you have to look at the Europa League.

I don’t think England can be too proud of the results on Thursday.

Lars Wallrodt, Die Welt