The representative of Philippe Coutinho has indicated that Barcelona have no plans of sanctioning the attacker’s sale despite the speculation in the media. The Brazil international had a mixed campaign with the Blaugrana last term and he was particularly disappointing in the league where he managed just five goals and two assists.
Amidst this, the Blaugrana have been actively pursuing the services of Antoine Griezmann from Atletico Madrid and reports have emerged that they could sanction the sale of Coutinho to balance the books. When asked about the speculation over the Brazilian’s future, agent Kia Joorabchian said that he has already spoken with the Blaugrana hierarchy and there remains no chance of the attacker parting ways with the club, he told: “I talked a few days ago with Pep Segura at Barcelona. He told me that the club does not want to sell Coutinho this summer, no matter what.”
Former Tottenham Hotspur star Darren Bent believes Liverpool may surprise everybody by making a marquee signing during this summer’s transfer window. The Reds could not end their long-wait for a maiden Premier League title last term but they still concluded the season on a strong note after securing the Champions League trophy for the sixth time in their history.
Speaking to The Star, Bent acknowledged that the Reds don’t need any major changes for the summer but they may surprise everyone with a big name signing. He added that Matthijs de Ligt could be an option for the Merseyside outfit, considering the teenager has a good bond with Virgil van Dijk in central defence for the Netherlands, he said: “They may go out and surprise everybody and go and get De Ligt, Virgil’s Dutch team-mate. If they can manage to pull that one off and those two can play together, that would be brilliant.”
Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson Becker has indicated that the Champions League save against Napoli at Anfield remain the best moment of his campaign. The Reds had a tough ride in the Champions League group stage with defeats at Paris Saint-Germain, Napoli, and Red Star Belgrade and they still progressed after holding the perfect record at home.
Still, they had to do the hard way and Alisson was crucial to the qualification for the knockouts after making a stunning stoppage time save against Napoli in the final group stage game. The interception ensured that the Reds came up with a 1-0 triumph in a must-win match and Alisson has now spoken about the moment.
Manchester United legend-turned-pundit Rio Ferdinand believes the Liverpool players will be haunted after squandered several clear-cut chances during the first leg of their Champions League semi-final against Barcelona. The Reds had gone into the game with the aim of securing an away goal with a strong performance, but rather the opposite happened as they succumbed to a disappointing 3-0 loss.
Speaking after the game, Ferdinand said that the Reds created gilt-edged chances in the game and some stars will be haunted for not taking advantage, he said: “Credit to them, they created chances but at the top level, you need to finish those chances. These Liverpool players won’t sleep tonight. (Mohamed) Salah at times was unplayable and (Marc-Andre) Ter Stegen was great again today. At this level, that’s got to hit the back of the net. We saw with Manchester United that they came here and had chances and didn’t put them away – you’d get punished at the other end.”
Jordan Henderson says that he is very happy with his advanced role in the current Liverpool team. There has been a lot of rotation from Liverpool especially in the midfield positions. Jurgen Klopp has been using the likes of Fabinho, Naby Keita, and Henderson in different positions. The former two players have been used in a defensive minded position, while Henderson has been given the license to go forward whenever he has the opportunity. The change in the midfield role has been quite rewarding over the last few weeks, as Liverpool picked up a 3-1 comeback victory over Southampton on Friday. It was a game that saw Henderson contribute with a goal and an assist.
The 28-year-old was initially criticised when he moved from Sunderland but he has become an integral part of Liverpool over the years. After assuming the role as the captain in recent years, Henderson has been the heartbeat of Liverpool. This season, however, his campaign has been curtailed by injuries. Henderson has only featured in the Champions League and Premier League to date this season. He has taken a remarkable time in order to get his first goal of the campaign, but the midfielder has now been able to contribute three assists and a goal in his last five matches for club and country.
Jurgen Klopp was extremely pleased with the big victory over Chelsea that helped put Liverpool closer towards the league title for the first time since the start of the Premier League. The Reds came close to winning the title a few years ago but they were beaten by Chelsea at Anfield as the end of the season approached. This was when Brendan Rodgers was the manager at Liverpool.Klopp has so far been unable to lift any major honour with Liverpool after coming up as a runner-up in the Champions League, Europa League, and the League Cup.
Liverpool were able to pick up a 2-0 victory over Chelsea this time around. After a goalless first half, Sadio Mane came up with the breakthrough and Mohamed Salah was able to score with a wonder-strike just a few minutes later.Klopp felt that Liverpool were the dominant force in the match and were completely deserving of their three points. Liverpool, though, had a few heart in the mouth moments when Eden Hazard struck the post and also had a brilliant opportunity at goal. However, Liverpool had the better of chances throughout the match and they are now inching closer towards the league title.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has acknowledged that Mohamed Salah is not enjoying the best of periods after failing to score for the fourth game running. The Egypt international has been the Reds’ standout performer since the beginning of last season but he has recently gone into a shell with the inability to convert opportunities into goals.
Speaking to Sky Sports, Klopp admitted that the game was difficult for the team, given they were up against the Toffees, who were determined to restrict them from scoring. He added that Salah has been getting everything right until the last second where he has failed to find the scoresheet, he said: “It is OK, a difficult game for different reasons and a wild opponent. The wind was coming from all directions and did not help anybody. It was a game that was difficult to control and we had three or four really big chances with Mohamed Salah and Fabinho, I don’t remember them having any chances. It is 0-0 and we kept our unbeaten run against them, not exactly what we wanted but it was a difficult game.
Manchester United legend-turned-pundit Gary Neville believes his former club may find it difficult to snub Ole Gunnar Solskjaer for the permanent managerial role, should the Norwegian guide the team to success against Liverpool this weekend. The 45-year-old was tasked with the interim role during the month of December after the dismissal of Jose Mourinho at the helm, and he has since exceeded expectations by guiding United to 11 wins from 13 matches.
Speaking on Sky Sports, Neville highlighted that there is no doubt that Ole wants the permanent role with the Red Devils and he has the best chance of doing so, should the club get the better of Jurgen Klopp’s side on Sunday, he said: “Two or three months ago he would have been hopeful of getting the job, but if he beats Liverpool on Sunday then I can’t see any way he wouldn’t get it. It shouldn’t be defined by one game but to beat Chelsea, Tottenham, Arsenal and then Liverpool it would almost make it impossible for him not to get the job. It is an incredible body of results and would make it a lot more difficult to withhold it from him if he keeps beating team after team.”
Liverpool defender Andrew Robertson has urged the club’s supporters to relax and enjoy the Premier League run-in for the Merseyside outfit. The Reds dropped points for the second league game on the bounce at West Ham United and this has reduced their advantage over Manchester City at the top to just three points.
Speaking after the game, Robertson highlighted that the team are not nervous regarding the title challenge and remains confident that the club can push for their maiden Premier League crown this term, he said: “I wouldn’t say nerves are showing – did anyone say that when City picked up no points at Palace and Leicester? I don’t think they did. It’s no different for us. A lot of people talk about pressure because we’ve never been in this position but it’s February. I think everyone needs to relax and try and enjoy the run-in if you’re fans. Many other teams would want to be in the position we’re in just now, so, nerves aren’t showing in the changing room.”
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has said that he has immense faith in his players and is not concerned by the recent league defeat at the hands of Manchester City. The Reds had faced City on Thursday night knowing that a victory would take them 10 points ahead of the reigning champions but that was not the case with the Citizens securing a 2-1 triumph.
Following the game, Klopp admitted that he is relatively unperturbed by the defeat, given the Reds still have a four-point advantage over the Citizens at the top of the table, he quipped: “I have so much faith in my players you can’t imagine. But if somebody would have told me that after both the City games – not that I’ve thought about it – that we would be four points clear, I would have paid money for it you cannot believe. You (some of the media) wanted to tell us the season is over if we lose tonight. But football is like this. If we’d have won tonight we’d have been 10 points clear, but we’re not. For us it’s really important that we take it game by game because there’s no other chance.”