Agger denies bust up
Daniel Agger has moved quickly to
set the record straight over his weekend comments and
maintains he is happy at the club.
Agger's quotes were everywhere following the weekend defeat
to Manchester United as he seemed to question Roy Hodgson's
tactics and suggested he would not be changing his style of
play to suit the new boss.
"I spoke to Danish TV after the game on Sunday and answered
the questions that were put to me. I didn't speak to the
"The problem was the questions never appeared on TV, only
the answers did, and then the newspapers put their own
questions in. What came out was one hundred per cent wrong
and that is why I am very disappointed."
Kuyt injury tonic for Hodgson
Roy Hodgson today revealed how Dirk Kuyt could return from
injury earlier than expected - either against Sunderland at
the weekend or Utrecht next Thursday.
Liverpoolfc.tv reported a fortnight ago that the Dutchman
would be out for up to a month with a shoulder injury
sustained on international duty.
However, the 30-year-old has made a faster-than-expected
recover and is already back in training.
Hodgson said: "Dirk has trained the last couple of days.
We're trying to protect him a little bit but he's made a
remarkable recovery, so it'll be interesting to see how he
progresses on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday in relation to
Saturday's game and the game next Thursday.
"We thought three to five weeks, so we're at the quick end
of the scale."
Kuyt will be desperate to make the trip to Utrecht, the club
where his professional career got up and running.
Meanwhile, the only other fitness concern for the Liverpool
boss is Fabio Aurelio, who is out with an Achilles problem.
Hodgson added: "With Fabio it's a little more tricky. The
sports science people are very anxious they get him 100 per
cent right before they throw him back in because they don't
want a situation where he's dropping out again. But he's
making very good progress and if push came to shove we could
(LFC Official Website)
Jones poised to make Reds debut
Goalkeeper Brad Jones could make his Liverpool debut against
Northampton in the third round of the Carling Cup at Anfield
The Australia international has sat on the bench for four
matches since his late-August move from Middlesbrough to
become Jose Reina's deputy but he is set to be given an
outing against the League Two side.
Manager Roy Hodgson will make numerous changes with many of
his first team stars rested, giving fringe and reserve team
players - some of whom featured in the Europa League victory
against Steaua Bucharest last week - another chance.
Reds (from): Jones, Kelly, Agger, Kyrgiakos, Wilson, Lucas,
Spearing, Pacheco, Babel, Jovanovic, Ngog, Bouzanis, Darby,
Amoo, Eccleston, Shelvey,
Liverpool directors 'knew nothing
about soccer', says Rafael Benítez
Rafael Benítez has spoken of his relief to be working with
Internazionale's president, Massimo Moratti, instead of
Liverpool's directors who "knew nothing about soccer".
Benítez joined the European and Italian champions in the
close season having left Liverpool after six years in charge
of the Premier League club.
"The last year at Liverpool I had directors who knew nothing
about soccer and you couldn't talk about soccer with them,"
he said. "My relationship with president Moratti is good, he
is a man who knows his soccer."
His working relationship with Liverpool's American owners
Tom Hicks and George Gillett, who put the indebted club up
for sale in April, was strained at times but Benítez had
previously stayed silent about his Anfield exit.
Benítez, whose new side are joint top and host Bari on
Wednesday in their fourth Serie A outing of the season, took
over from José Mourinho after Inter sealed an unprecedented
Italian treble last season.
Meireles places Gerrard
in Essien & Iniesta bracket
New Liverpool signing Raul Meireles believes his Anfield
colleague Steven Gerrard is one of the best three
midfielders in the world alongside Chelsea’s Michael Essien
and Barcelona’s Andres Iniesta.
The Portuguese international dovetailed well with Gerrard
during the second half of Liverpool’s defeat at Old Trafford
on Sunday, and the former FC Porto star admits he is looking
forward to playing with a player he holds in
the highest regard.
Meireles suggests Gerrard is up there with Michael Essien,
who has started the season in superb form for Chelsea, and
Iniesta, who was perhaps the best player on show at the
World Cup finals.
Meireles told LFC Weekly: "For a long time, I have said that
Gerrard is one of the top three midfielders in the European
“Along with Michael Essien of Chelsea and Andres Iniesta of
"Now I am his team-mate. I think we can combine well
Liverpool SOS fans
plan new protests
Liverpool supporters' group Spirit of Shankly are planning
two-day long protests against the club's owners.
The broken promises of Tom Hicks and George Gillet have
caused so much anger on Merseyside that protests at games
have become common.
However this time the group have gone one step further by
encouraging all fans to take part in a sit down protest
after Saturday's match with Sunderland.
A statement from the association said: "We would like as
many supporters as possible, to make their feelings known
towards the owners during the Sunderland match, using
banners, flags and songs.
"We ask everyone in the ground to make their voices heard –
let everyone know you will no longer tolerate the current
"Following the match, irrespective of the result, we intend
to hold a sit in protest. Regardless of where you sit,
remain in the ground and make your views heard. Gather at
the front of the stand you are in, with flags and banners,
and make your voices heard."
Spirit of Shankly have urged supporters to follow a similar
course of action the following week, when Blackpool visit
Wilson set for first
Liverpool start in Cup
Danny Wilson is set for a first Liverpool start tomorrow
night in the Carling Cup against Northampton.
The teenage defender signed from Scottish champions Rangers
in the summer and could be in line to make his Reds debut in
the Carling Cup third-round clash.
Wilson said: "To start a game for the first time would be
special and I just hope the manager thinks I am ready. If
not I will work even harder to try and make
Amoo's Kop dream
David Amoo is hoping his impressive start to the 2010-11
campaign will earn him a chance in Wednesday's Carling Cup
clash with Northampton Town.
The right winger made his full debut for the Reds in the
Europa League third qualifying round against FK Rabotnicki
back in July and has since starred for John McMahon's
reserves, netting three goals in three games.
He admits he has thought about the prospect of featuring in
the third round tie with the Cobblers and hopes he can
continue to impress in the months ahead.
"It was a great experience to play in Macedonia in front of
such a big crowd and it would be even better to play at
Anfield for the first team,"
Amoo told Liverpoolfc.tv.
"Obviously I've played there in the Youth Cup but this would
be another level up. It would be great to be involved in
"Fingers crossed, I can get into the squad. If I can do
that, it would be great."
(LFC Official Website)
Agger won't alter style
Daniel Agger finds himself out of favour at Liverpool, but
insists he will not be changing his ways.
The Danish defender was overlooked for the Reds' 0-0 draw at
Birmingham and was only awarded a late cameo in their 3-2
defeat to Manchester United
A lack of activity has left him frustrated, with new boss
Roy Hodgson currently favouring other options.
Agger believes the former Fulham boss continues to snub him
because his game does not suit the new-look Liverpool.
Roy keen to solve
Roy Hodgson believes Raul Meireles and Steven Gerrard can
provide the midfield axis on which Liverpool can regain
Champions League status.
Meireles, a £10.7million signing from Porto, was brought in
on the weekend before the closing of the transfer window
with some of the proceeds of the sale of Javier Mascherano
The majority of his time on the pitch has been spent in the
advanced role behind Fernando Torres usually occupied by
Steven Gerrard and Hodgson hopes, given time, the pair will
strike up a useful partnership.
He has admitted, however, he is still not sure where
Meireles' best position is.
"They (he and Gerrard) are certainly interchangeable," said
"We signed Meireles and the day after he went for 10 days
away with Portugal and then came back for two days and made
a substitute appearance against Birmingham.
"He had two training sessions and played on Thursday night
and he played again on Sunday so it is very early for me to
make very strong judgements about where his best position
Blackstone walk away
from Hicks refinancing
Tom Hicks latest attempt to refinance Liverpool’s enormous
debt in return for an equity share in the club has been sunk
following a weekend of Liverpool FC
According to The Guardian, GSO Capital Partners (a
subsidiary of Blackstone Investments) have walked away from
discussions with Tom Hicks.
City extend Ayala loan deal
Hull City have extended the loan of Liverpool defender
The centre-back has impressed during his three displays for
the club so far, being instrumental in consecutive
clean-sheets at home alongside Anthony Gerrard.
City have moved swiftly to extend Ayala`s current loan deal
until 1st January 2011, at which point City will re-assess
the possibility of seeing the defender stay at the KC until
the end of the season.
Ayala has already found the net this season, scoring on his
home debut during a 2-0 win over Derby County.
Cole calls for patience
Joe Cole is refusing to panic despite Liverpool's worst
start in the Premier League in 18 years.
Liverpool have won just won of their opening five games
after going down 3-2 to old rivals Manchester United on
Cole, who joined Liverpool on a free transfer in the summer,
has called for patience and is confident Roy Hodgson's side
will soon turn things around.
"Judge us in May where we are," Cole told Sky Sports News.
"We have had a tough start to the season with the fixture
list and with Fernando [Torres] not being match fit, 100 per
cent up until the last couple of weeks and also the change
of personnel with the change of manager.
Gerrard's four key fixtures
Steven Gerrard believes Liverpool are already showing signs
of improvement under Roy Hodgson - and he hopes to prove it
with a four-match winning spree in the coming weeks.
The skipper was speaking after his two goals almost earned
the Reds a share of the spoils at Old Trafford on Sunday.
Gerrard said: "It's going to take time before the new
manager gets his feet in the door and gets his ideas over.
"Of course we're improving and the performance was really
good. If we play like that every week we'll beat most of the
teams in the league. But here we came up against a man in
form and he was the difference.
"We've got a League Cup game against Northampton - and that
competition is very important to us - before we play
Sunderland next week.
"Nobody will be sulking because we want to make sure we go
into the next international break next month having won all
(LFC Official Website)
Carragher: Liverpool FC fighting
at Man Utd shows we are on the right track
Jamie Carragher today claimed Liverpool’s spirited second
half showing at Old Trafford points to a bright future – as
he held his hands up to the goal that cost them a point.
Though the Reds vice-captain was content with the way the
Reds acquitted themselves for long periods of yesterday’s
tussle with Manchester United, his positive mood was
significantly tempered by events in the final six minutes.
“Any time you lose a big game, you are always bitterly
“To come back from two goals down was a fantastic effort
from the lads but I thought we did well for the 90 minutes.
“We were not really asked too many questions and there are
not too many teams who can say that after going to Old
best United day
Manchester United striker Dimitar Berbatov happily accepted
the praise after his hat-trick inspired the 3-2 triumph over
Premier League rivals Liverpool on Sunday.
"It was probably my best day in a United shirt," said
Hicks planning finance deal
Liverpool co-owner Tom Hicks is reportedly launching another
bid to keep hold of the club by securing financing from a
private equity company.
The Reds co-owner and partner George Gillett put the club up
for sale in April and Barclays Capital was appointed to
oversee the deal.
However, sufficient interest has failed to materialise as
problems both on and off the pitch continue to derail
England's most successful club.
The lack of interest has prompted Hicks to pursue other
options and the American is now believed to be putting
together his own financing deal.
Hicks and compatriot Gillett, who are increasingly unpopular
with the Anfield faithful, had been eager to cut their
losses and return to their homeland.
Debts of up to £237million have restricted the club's
progression, angering supporters, who may be forced to
furter endure the duo's ownership should Hicks' latest
business move prove successful.
Hodgson: It's not a catastrophe
Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson has dismissed Manchester
United counterpart Sir Alex Ferguson's assertion that their
3-2 defeat at Old Trafford is a "catastrophe" for the
He did accept, however, that any potential bid for a
Barclays Premier League title was already looking remote.
"We have had a remarkably hard start to the season," said
the Liverpool boss.
"Our performance today was clearly a lot better than our
last two Barclays Premier League performances (a 1-0 win
over West Brom and a goalless draw
"We were playing against a top team and we can take a lot of
credit from the way we went about our business and got
ourselves back into the game."
United boss applauds 'great result'
Sir Alex Ferguson admitted he
feared Manchester United would not get anything from
Sunday's thrilling 3-2 win over Liverpool at Old Trafford.
The Scot said: "From thinking to myself 'it's going to be
10' we ended up at 2-2. It was a travesty of a scoreline
then - but a great result at the end.
"They (Liverpool) didn't offer anything and depended on
decisions from the linesman to get back in the game.
"Edwin van der Sar had no saves to make, Paul Scholes
controlled the midfield and we looked dangerous up front
with Dimitar and Nani - I couldn't see us losing the game."
A tale of two strikers at OT
TEAMtalk feels the dramatic
North-West clash between Manchester United and Liverpool at
Old Trafford was decided by a tale of two strikers.
The North-West clash between England's two most successful
clubs was decided by a tale of two strikers and highlighted
just where Liverpool have to improve if they are to catch up
with Manchester United.
Dimitar Berbatov was at his clinical and brilliant best as
he scored a hat-trick. By contrast, Liverpool counterpart
Fernando Torres barely had a clear-cut chance
Character may not be an issue for the Merseysiders as they
fought back from 2-0 down only to concede again late on -
but manager Roy Hodgson still has plenty to do to make his
side feared once again.
In Torres they possess one of the most lethal strikers in
world football but at the moment they are just not getting
the best out of him.
He may not be at his sharpest but he was starved of
opportunities at Old Trafford.
Berba treble sinks Reds
Dimitar Berbatov scored a hat-trick as Manchester United
enjoyed a thrilling 3-2 victory over old rivals Liverpool at
United appeared in danger of throwing away a winning
position for the third time this season when Steven
Gerrard's brace had cancelled out Berbatov's double either
side of half-time.
However, with six minutes to go, the Bulgarian striker
became the first United player to net a hat-trick against
Liverpool in 64 years as he headed home
John O'Shea's cross.
Meireles, Poulsen and Cole
to start against Man United
Christian Poulsen, Raul Meireles and Joe Cole will start
today against Manchester United, according to the teamsheet
we have received.
Pepe Reina will be in goal once again, with Brad Jones on
Glen Johnson, Jamie Carragher and Martin Skrtel return and
join Paul Konchesky to form the back four.
Christian Poulsen also returns to the side and will team up
with Raul Meireles in the centre of midfield.
Maxi Rodriguez will be on the right, with Steven Gerrard in
the hole and a new position for Joe Cole, who starts on the
Fernando Torres replaces David Ngog, who scored two goals
against Steaua Bucharest in midweek.
The line-up may change due to any late decisions or injuries
suffered by the players in the warm-up.
Starting: Reina, Johnson, Carragher, Skrtel, Konchesky,
Poulsen, Meireles; Maxi, Gerrard, Cole, Torres.
Ferguson: Rafa lucky to last so
Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson claims Rafael
Benitez was fortunate not to lose his job at Liverpool
before the end of last season.
Ferguson's side face a new-look Liverpool at Old Trafford
today bidding to register a convincing win after a number of
below-par displays at the start of the season.
Victory against their biggest rivals, now under the guidance
of Roy Hodgson, would be a timely lift for United, and
Ferguson turned up the heat ahead of the contest by
insisting Benitez was only given a stay of execution at
Anfield due to his contractual situation.
The Spaniard, who penned a new five-year deal at Anfield in
2009, eventually left the club in June having guided the
reds to a disappointing seventh-placed finish in the top
"I wasn't surprised at all that Liverpool changed their
manager in the summer. I think everyone expected it even
though Benitez had signed a new contract," Ferguson said in
quotes reported by The People.
"That was the only complication about it. If he hadn't
signed a contract the previous season then I am sure he
would have gone before the end of
the last season.
"But the fact he had signed a new contract brings its own
complications in terms of compensation and that type of
thing, so they waited.
"Obviously, the directors at the club had come to the stage
where they had to discuss the manager's future because of
the performances. Then I think everybody expected it to
happen and for him to go."