Red News


FEBRUARY            2010
16 17 18



Gerrard: We'll finish job off
Steven Gerrard reflected on Liverpool's slender first leg victory over Unirea Urziceni on Thursday night and insisted the Reds will finish the job off in Bucharest next week.
Liverpool will travel to the Romanian capital with a David Ngog goal to protect as they look to secure their place in the last sixteen of the competiiton, but the skipper believes Rafael Benitez's side will prove too strong for Unirea on
their own pitch.
"Unirea were very stubborn tonight," he said. "We expected that because their manager has set up a team against us before and we knew they'd be difficult to break down.
"We have to be more clinical and I am confident we will get more joy away from home against them. They will have to try to beat us and we can kill them off."
(LFC Official Website)

Ngog fires frustrated
Liverpool to victory

Striker David Ngog’s goal nine minutes from time eventually broke the resistance of a determined Unirea Urziceni at Anfield in the Europa League.
With the visitors intent on soaking up plenty of pressure Rafael Benitez’s side struggled to find the creativity to get past the massed Romanian ranks.
However, the Frenchman’s close-range header meant the Reds have some breathing space as they head to Bucharest for next week’s last-32 second leg.
The victory was only Liverpool’s third in nine European fixtures since they hammered Real Madrid 4-0 in the last 16 of the Champions League 11 months ago - a disappointing run which contributed to their exit from Europe’s elite-level competition in December.
(Evening Echo)

Carra starts
Jamie Carragher is included in Liverpool's starting line-up for this evening's Europa League clash with Unirea Urziceni at Anfield.
The Reds vice-captain has recovered from an abductor injury sustained against Arsenal to face the Romanian champions.
There are also starts for Fabio Aurelio and Alberto Aquilani.
Liverpool: Reina, Carragher, Skrtel, Agger, Aurelio, Kuyt, Aquilani, Mascherano, Riera, Gerrard, Ngog.
Subs: Cavalieri, Kyrgiakos, Babel, Lucas, Insua, Degen, Pacheco.
(LFC Official Website)
Gerrard: Reds gunning for trophy
Captain Steven Gerrard has warned their Europa League rivals not to underestimate Liverpool.
Despite what has been a disappointing season for the Reds so far, with early exits from the Champions League, FA Cup and Premier League title race, the England midfielder stressed they were not prepared to give up without a fight.
"It's very dangerous to bet against Liverpool, especially when our backs are to the wall," said the 29-year-old, who, along with Jamie Carragher, is one of only two remaining squad members who played in the 5-4 UEFA Cup final victory over Alaves nine years ago.
(Press Association Sport)

Insua calls for Europa focus
Emiliano Insua knows Liverpool must approach the Europa League with the same mentality they would if they were still in the Champions League.
Having failed to make it through the group stage for the first time in manager Rafael Benitez's reign of almost six years, the Reds are facing up to the reality of UEFA's second-tier competition.
Romanian opponents Unirea Urziceni also dropped out of the Champions League this season but their expectations on their first appearance among Europe's elite will have been a lot lower than Liverpool's.
But Insua insists the Reds have to call on their vast European experience to get them through what will be an unfamiliar challenge for many of the squad.
"It is a bit strange to see Liverpool in the Europa League but we have to approach the game like we're playing in the Champions League," said the Argentinian

Vieira to miss Liverpool clash
Patrick Vieira will miss Man City's game against Liverpool after picking up a three-match ban for violent conduct.
The former Arsenal midfielder has until Thursday afternoon to appeal against
the decision.
(LFC Online)

Benitez derides Champions
League play-off plan

Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez has laughed off the idea of a Champions League play-off, saying teams would be playing "until the end of the century".
The suggestion of a play-off between the teams who come fourth to seventh for the fourth spot has drawn mixed reviews but Benitez says it is absurd.
"We are playing too much now. They were talking about a 39th game being played in Asia," he said.
"If we now play the play-offs we'll be playing until the end of the century."
"To play three, maybe four fixtures, when you don't have time with international football - when will you play, how can you play these games and what does it mean for the team that finishes fourth?," stated Benitez.
"Maybe we can do the same with the teams at the bottom of the table. If you finish fourth maybe you could play with the team who finished third
from the bottom.
"Then during the whole season we can play 50 games and we don't have to rest so that will be fantastic."
(BBC Sport Online)

Maxi enjoying Reds life
Liverpool new boy Maxi Rodriguez insists he is enjoying life at Anfield following his arrival last month.
Argentine ace Rodriguez joined Liverpool during the January transfer window on a free transfer after leaving Atletico Madrid.
Maxi has started Liverpool's last two matches and he believes he is getting used to the style of English football.
"It's going fantastic so far and I couldn't have hoped for better," Rodriguez told the club's official website. "It's so different to daily life in Madrid, but I think I am settling in and it's even better here than I expected it to be.
"Gradually as the weeks have gone by, I've been getting used to daily life in the city. I think it will be even better when I'm more settled.
"It's totally different here to the football in La Liga. Certainly you are aware of the fact it is a lot more physical, tougher and aggressive - they are
the big differences.
"But wherever you play football in the world, you still play with a round ball, so you get used to it.
"What's more, I really like the competitive, physical aspect of the game. I think it suits my style and I'm enjoying it."
(Sky Sports)

Joining Liverpool would be my pinnacle,
says Sunderland's Kenwyne Jones

Sunderland striker Kenwyne Jones has dropped a huge hint that he would jump at the chance of joining Liverpool.
Jones was linked with a move to Anfield last month and although he remains committed to the Sunderland cause the speculation has pricked his interest in swapping Wearside for Merseyside.
"If one of the world's big clubs comes in for you it's understandable a player might have the desire to go to that next level," said the Trinidad & Tobago international.
"Until you sign a contract with a new club it's all just talk. January was a crazy time and now I have to focus on the games ahead.
"The manager spoke to me. The reassuring speech came out to let me know the club still wanted me. That is always nice to hear.
"But sometimes a big situation like the transfer story can make it hard for the manager to say anything. But as far as I am concerned, we are all needed."
(The Daily Telegraph)

Carragher set for Liverpool return
Injury worries appear to be easing for Liverpool as defender Jamie Carragher is fit to face Unirea Urziceni in the Europa League tie at Anfield.
And in another boost to Reds boss Rafa Benitez, Yossi Benayoun, Fernando Torres and Glen Johnson are all close to returns.
Reds vice-captain Carragher was forced off in last Wednesday's 1-0 defeat at Arsenal with a groin problem but has now recovered.
Midfielder Benayoun, who has been out for more than a month after breaking a rib in the FA Cup defeat by Reading on January 13, has an outside chance of featuring against the Romanians.
"Carra is training again and he will be available, which is very good news for us as he is an important player for us," said Benitez.
"Yossi is training with the team. He still has a problem with his rib but at least he is training. We will decide about him on Thursday."
Striker Torres and full-back Johnson will not be available for the match but continue to make good progress with their comebacks from knee injuries.
"Torres and Johnson are progressing and working with the fitness coach,"
said Benitez.
"They are very close but not available yet."
(Football 365)
Marouane Fellaini out for six months
after Sotirios Kyrgiakos tackle

Everton's Marouane Fellaini lies in pain after the tackle which saw Liverpool's Sotirios Kyrgiakos sent off. Photograph: John Walton/Empics
Everton have been dealt a major injury setback after their influential midfielder Marouane Fellaini was ruled out for six months with ankle ligament damage.
The Belgium international, who has been in superb form of late, visited a specialist in London yesterday to assess the extent of the injury inflicted by Sotirios Kyrgiakos's two-footed challenge in the recent Merseyside derby.
Fellaini was carried off as a result of the foul that brought a straight red card for the Liverpool defender and had to delay his appointment with the specialist due to inflammation around the ankle.
His scheduled absence means the £15m club record signing will miss the remainder of this campaign, pre-season training, and will not be available until the start of next season.

Benitez: Liverpool FC will
give Europa League best shot

Rafa Benitez today promised Liverpool will make the best of a difficult situation when they return to European action later this week.
In normal circumstances, the Reds’ boss would have been preparing his side for a Champions League clash this week but events before Christmas means they have had to lower their sights.
Benitez, though, is looking forward to Thursday night’s assignment against Unirea Urziceni and insists he is preparing for the Anfield clash without any pangs for the competition with which Liverpool have become accustomed in recent years.
“You have to be positive and turn things in your favour. Now we have another opportunity (of playing in Europe) and we must try to keep playing better.
“We have got to keep progressing in the Europa League and aim to finish as high as we can in the Premier League.”
(Liverpool Echo)

Carlos Tévez to miss Manchester City's
Premier League showdown with Liverpool

Carlos Tévez is unlikely to return from Argentina in time to play for Manchester City against Liverpool on Sunday, even though his second daughter was born over the weekend.
Tévez missed City's 1-1 FA Cup fifth-round draw with Stoke at Eastlands after being granted leave to travel to his homeland to be at the birth in a hospital in Buenos Aires.
The Argentina international, City's leading scorer this season, will not be pressured into returning to England and manager Roberto Mancini is not thought to be expecting him back in time for the crucial fixture against Liverpool.
(The Daily Telegraph)

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