Ngoo strikes as U18s sink Boro'
Liverpool under-18s continued their superb run-in to the
season courtesy of an emphatic 3-0 victory at home to
Middlesbrough on Saturday afternoon.
Rodolfo Borrell's side produced a dominant display against
the North-East outfit and deservedly took the spoils
courtesy of goals from Michael Ngoo, Tom Ince and Krisztian
It means the Reds have now stretched their unbeaten run to
eight matches and will head into next Thursday's clash at
home to Leeds United in buoyant mood.
Liverpool under-18s: Oldfield, Flanagan, Robinson, Sama,
Wisdom, Coady, Roddan, Silva (Sterling 73), Ince, Adorjan,
Ngoo (Emilsson 80).
Unused subs: Chamberlain, McGiveron, Ihiekwe.
(LFC Official Website)
Reds eyes Swedish starlet
Liverpool are lining up a move for talented Swedish teenager
The 15-year-old, who currently plies his trade with Swedish
minnows Savedalens IF, enjoyed a trial on Merseyside earlier
Peterson impressed Liverpool's coaching team during his time
training at the club and they are now ready to push through
a move for the youngster.
The teenager is excited at the prospect of making the move
to the English titans.
"I am no longer just toying with the dream. It feels like
the club really want to give me a chance," Peterson told
The player's advisor, Robert Bengtsson Barkroth, confirmed
Liverpool are planning to offer Peterson a deal at Anfield.
"We understand that Liverpool are willing to offer an
education package, that will include school and studies,"
said Bengtsson Barkroth.
Reina: Burnley a must-win game
Liverpool goalkeeper Jose Reina has called on the team to
focus on winning tomorrow’s Barclays Premier League match at
Burnley despite a crucial European semi-final second leg
looming in the background.
“We are still playing for a European place, it is a must-win
game because we have to guarantee at least seventh place and
then think about something else,”
“They (Burnley) are playing for their survival and for us,
in five days, we’ve been travelling around Europe on trains,
planes and buses so it has been very tough but it is a
massive three points.”
Benitez welcomes Rodriguez back
Rafa Benitez has predicted Liverpool’s play will
dramatically improve at Burnley tomorrow – thanks to the
return of the man who has started to make them tick.
After a slow start to life on Merseyside, Maxi Rodriguez has
blossomed in the last six weeks and again played a starring
role in Monday night’s 3-0 dismissal
of West Ham.
“Maxi has become a very important player for us,” said
Benitez, who needs to assess David Ngog’s fitness. “He can
keep the ball, he can pass it and his energy is good.
“He is always working very hard and it was a pity that we
could not have him with us against Atletico; hopefully we
will play well with him in the league."
Lee expecting tough game
Sammy Lee is expecting a difficult game tomorrow.
The assistant manager has warned the Reds to expect a tough
game at Turf Moor as Burnley fight for their Premiership
"At the end of the day we are still fighting for what we
want. We've said on many occasions that each game presents
its own degree of difficulty and none more so than Burnley,"
"It's a very difficult place to go. The pitch won't be great
but we'll have
to adapt to it.
"We know they have Fletcher who has scored some goals for
them this season, but they also have Nugent and we know he
can be a threat for us. At the end of the day it's about how
we approach the game and we have to make sure we do
everything right from our end."
Liverpool tempted by move
for Rafael van der Vaart
Liverpool are considering a summer move for Rafael van der
Vaart, having been offered the chance to sign the Holland
international by Real Madrid.
Club officials met in the Spanish capital before Liverpool's
Europa League semi-final against Atlético Madrid on
Thursday, with Real taking the opportunity to try to offload
several players deemed surplus to requirements by the club
president, Florentino Perez.
Forlan plays down favourites tag
Diego Forlan refuses to concede that Atletico Madrid's
first-leg victory over Liverpool makes them favourites to
reach the Europa League final.
Forlan struck the only goal of Thursday night's semi-final
opener at the Estadio Vicente Calderon to put Atletico in
the box seat ahead of next week's return leg
The Uruguayan said: "I don't think we are favourites, we did
a good job here, we won the game and they didn't score, but
they are a strong team with good players and we know it's
going to be a difficult game."
Smith cool on Wilson's Reds link
Rangers manager Walter Smith has played down reports that
Danny Wilson will be sold to Liverpool and then return to
Ibrox on loan next season.
The Scottish champions have confirmed the Premier League
giants made an enquiry about the highly-rated 18-year-old
The youngster, who has made 24 appearances this season, has
14 months left on his existing deal and has yet to agree a
new contract with Rangers.
Reports today suggested the Ibrox side could now strike a
deal with Liverpool that would see them sell Wilson in the
summer before bringing him back on loan for the new term.
But Smith - who confirmed the player could be sidelined for
the next couple of weeks with a thigh strain - felt such a
scenario was unlikely.
"I don't think that's the case," he said.
"I don't think in any circumstances would we allow that to
Ngog emerges as Reds injury doubt
Liverpool's injury problems has worsened ahead of Sunday's
trip to Burnley after David Ngog picked up a back injury
against Atletico Madrid.
The 21-year-old Frenchman was substituted in the second half
of Thursday's Europa League tie as a precaution but Rafa
Benitez will be hoping he recoveres with Fernando Torres out
for the season.
Ngog will be assessed on Saturday to see whether he is fit
enough to take part at Turf Moor, having scored in the
Premier League victory over West Ham
Midfielder Maxi Rodriguez returns after being ineligible in
Europe but defenders Emiliano Insua, Fabio Aurelio, Martin
Skrtel and Martin Kelly are all still injured.
Reds (from): Reina, Johnson, Carragher, Kyrgiakos, Agger,
Lucas, Mascherano, Kuyt, Gerrard, Rodriguez, Benayoun, Ngog,
Cavalieri, Babel, Aquilani, Degen, El Zhar, Pacheco, Ayala,
Carra: We might need three
Jamie Carragher believes Liverpool's Hamburg dream remains
very much alive but has warned of the threat Atletico Madrid
will pose at Anfield.
"It's going to be a tough at Anfield now and the way they
play on the counterattack, the demands will suit them," said
Carragher. "If they score, that will leave us needing three.
"We know what they will be trying to do. It is up to us to
stop them doing that. Hopefully the atmosphere will play a
big part and it will be enough."
(LFC Official Website)
Aquilani exit talk dismissed
Alberto Aquilani's agent has refuted talk that the
midfielder could leave Liverpool at the end of the season.
Rumours have been rife that Aquilani could be on his way out
of Anfield this summer after just one season on Merseyside.
The Italian international has failed to hit the heights at
Liverpool since his arrival from Roma and due to fitness and
form has been unable to establish himself as a regular in
Rafa Benitez's first-team plans.
However, Aquilani's representative Franco Zavaglia insists
the proposed sale of the club will have no bearing on the
midfielder's future at Anfield.
"I don't think Liverpool will dismantle the team because
they are in an economic crisis," Zavaglia told
"Plus, Alberto has a five-year deal there. How can people
he will be sold?"
Rafa considers Clarets options
Rafa Benitez maybe tempted to rest some players for the
clash with Burnley and Fernando Torres is obviously out.
Benitez's side have had a mammoth journey too and from
Madrid for their Europa League cup semi-final first leg
clash and with the second leg looming on Thursday, where
they need to overturn a goal deficit, Benitez maybe tempted
to rest some players.
Maxi Rodriguez will come back into the squad after being
ineligible on Thursday night but Emiliano Insua, Fabio
Aurelio and Martin Skrtel all remain on the injured list and
are unlikely to feature, while Albert Riera appears to be
out of the picture all together.
Rafa: Torres is happy
Rafa Benitez insists Fernando Torres is happy at Liverpool
after the striker was linked with a big-money move to
Premier League rivals Manchester City.
Reports on Thursday had claimed that City were lining up a
£60million bid for Torres in the summer as Roberto Mancini
looks to improve his squad.
Mancini acknowledged his admiration for the Spain
international and stated every club in Europe would be
interested in Torres, but confirmed any transfer talks would
be on hold until the end of the season.
However, speaking after Liverpool's 1-0 defeat by Atletico
Madrid in the first leg of the Europa League semi-final,
Benitez played down talk the 26-year-old
could be sold.
"Torres is happy," stressed Benitez.
"The thing he's thinking about now is being ready as soon as
and that's it.
"From the beginning he's said he's been very happy at
Reina happy to escape
only one goal down
Liverpool goalkeeper Jose Reina insisted "it could have been
worse" despite his side's 1-0 defeat at Atletico Madrid in
their Europa League semi-final first leg.
The Spaniard said: "We were a little unlucky (with the goal)
because Soto slipped.
"(The saves were) important to keep the tie alive - there is
still a long 90 minutes to go at Anfield.
"We are behind now and it is very difficult but if there is
one team who can do it with their fans behind them, it is
Stevie ready for 'big, big night'
Steven Gerrard believes Atletico Madrid will fear coming to
Anfield next week regardless of their one-goal lead.
Gerrard accepts he and his teammates will have to up their
game - but he is confident they can still reach the final in
"This was a game of very few chances but I think it'll be
more exciting next week with the supporters behind us. If we
get the first goal it could be a big, big night."
(LFC Official Website)
Benitez confident of making final
Rafa Benitez is confident Liverpool can win their Europa
League semi-final tie at Anfield after a narrow first-leg
defeat at Atletico Madrid.
Liverpool slipped to a 1-0 loss at the Vicente Calderon on
Thursday night after Diego Forlan netted the only goal of a
tight game in the eighth minute.
"I have a lot of confidence of playing at Anfield, in our
players and in our fans. Today we had a lot of fans behind
the team and that was very positive, and at Anfield we will
have more of them," said Benitez.
"We've been in the same situation before and we've found out
we can win, so hopefully it will be the same again," added
Forlan thwarts Reds in Spain
Diego Forlan came back to haunt Liverpool to give Atletico
Madrid a 1-0 advantage in their Europa League semi-final.
The former Manchester United striker gave the Primera Liga
side a narrow edge going into the return leg at Anfield next
Thursday after capitalising on some hopeless defending in
the ninth minute.
Jose Manuel Jurado's ball into the box was met by Forlan,
who was offered two bites at the cherry to give the Spanish
outfit the perfect start on home soil.
Liverpool recovered and saw Yossi Benayoun disallowed what
appeared a legitimate goal after being flagged offside
midway through the first-half but in a match that failed to
inspire, Rafa Benitez's side require a typical effort on
Merseyside to reach the Hamburg showpiece on 12th May.
Javier Mascherano returns to Liverpool's starting XI for
tonight's Europa League semi-final, first leg clash with
The Argentina captain replaces the ineligible Maxi Rodriguez
at the Vicente Calderon as Rafael Benitez makes one change
to the side that beat West Ham
Liverpool: Reina, Johnson, Carragher, Kyrgiakos, Agger,
Kuyt, Lucas, Mascherano, Benayoun, Gerrard, Ngog.
Subs: Cavalieri, Aquilani, Degen, El Zhar, Ayala, Pacheco,
(LFC Official Website)
Italian press: Juve begin recruiting
of Benitez's backroom staff
According to reports in Italy, Serie A giants Juventus are
closing in on a deal for Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez and
have begun the process of recruiting a number of his Anfield
backroom staff at his request.
The Liverpool manager has been earmarked by Juventus as the
ideal candidate to succeed current incumbent Alberto
Zaccheroni, and the club’s chief-executive John Elkann is in
the process of ensuring the Spaniard makes a smooth
transition from the Premier League to Serie A by approaching
selected members of his backroom staff.
Mancini delays Torres talk
Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini has admitted his
admiration of Liverpool striker Fernando Torres, but has put
off all transfer talk until end the of the season.
The world's richest club have been heavily linked with the
Spain ace for several weeks and it is thought City could
make a bid for the currently injured star once the season is
But while Mancini has admitted his admiration of the player,
he believes all the top clubs in Europe would love to sign
And instead of transfer talk, the City boss is concentrating
on securing UEFA Champions League football next term.
Mancini said: "Fernando Torres is a fantastic striker.
"But all the teams in Europe are interested in him.
"We must get the rest of the matches out of the way first,
then we will decide about other players."
Atletico ace determined to dash
Liverpool's European dreams
Simao feels it is imperative Atletico Madrid take a positive
result from their home date with Liverpool.
The Spaniards welcome the Reds to Vicente Calderon on
Thursday in the first leg of their Europa League semi-final.
Both sides feel they are equipped to go on and take the
crown, but know they will need to be at their best to safely
negotiate a route through the last four.
"These games against Liverpool will not be easy and I expect
two tough matches between two evenly matched sides," the
Portuguese playmaker told skysports.com.
"I think the tie will be settled on the smallest details.
"For us the main objective is to score at home and to give
ourselves a chance in England."
Benitez: We must pressure
Atletico Madrid from the start
Rafa Benitez will urge his players to put Atletico Madrid
under pressure from the word go tonight as Liverpool aim to
take a giant step towards the Europa League final.
“It is true there has been a big difference between our
games at home and away this season,” said Benitez, who is
expected to hand Dirk Kuyt the role of lone striker.
“We have scored lots of goals at Anfield but away we have to
improve. How can we improve? By showing character and making
ourselves difficult to beat. If we show good character, we
have got the quality to beat anyone."
Mascherano: Tonight is
Liverpool’s biggest game of season
Javier Mascherano says tonight's Europa League semi at
Atletico Madrid is Liverpool's biggest game of the season.
It has been a largely disappointing season for the Reds, who
have also played a game more than Spurs, and Benitez's men
are determined to try and end it on a high note with victory
in the Europa League.
When asked about the importance of tomorrow's game,
Mascherano said: "Trophies are the main thing. I said this a
few weeks ago. This is the biggest game of this season for
"We will come to the stadium and we will try to do our best.
After a long trip we are together, we are thinking of the
game and we know if our mindset is right we can get a good