Flanno insists Reds will heed Stevie’s words

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Jon Flanagan insists Liverpool’s players will heed the words of captain Steven Gerrard at the final whistle following Sunday’s dramatic 3-2 win over Manchester City.


Gerrard gathered his teammates in a huddle at the final whistle to remind them that the job is far from done, despite Phillipe Coutinho’s 78th minute strike putting them seven points clear of Manchester City and two clear of Chelsea at the top of the table.

Liverpool v Manchester City - Barclays Premier League

And Flanagan insists the Reds will listen to their captains orders.

He told the Liverpool Echo: “It was a great win. All the lads and all the fans are believing we can do it now.

“Stevie said in the huddle that we need to go again next weekend at Norwich and he’s right.


“We haven’t achieved anything yet and we all know that. Man City is gone and it’s about the next game.

“Steven has been phenomenal. He has carried this club for years and he deserves this more than anyone.

“All the lads are doing it for themselves but especially for Stevie as well.

“We have to stay focused and prepare for Norwich.

“There are still another four games to be won and we can’t allow things to slip.

“We need to keep going like this right to the end.”


Rodgers: We are ready for the pressure

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Brendan Rodgers insists Liverpool are ready to handle the pressure of being installed as the new favourites for the Premier League title, after Sunday’s pulsating 3-2 victory over Manchester City.

Phillipe Coutinho’s 78th minute strike secured a famous three points for the Reds, and took them two points clear of Chelsea with just four games remaining.

The result also meant Manchester City sit seven points behind Rodgers side, despite holding two games in hand.

Brendan Rodgers

Liverpool’s destiny though remains firmly in their own hands, knowing that four wins from their final four games will see them bring home their first league title since 1990.

And Rodgers revealed he is confident his side are more than capable of coping with the pressure in the remaining four games.


Rodgers told Sky Sports: “The expectancy of this football club is a challenge every day. Our objective is to stay where we are, there is no question about that.

“We’ve been put under pressure in every game that we’ve played. But you see the level and the quality of our football – it was fantastic today – so we’re clearly coping with it.

“It was a remarkable performance. I thought we were incredible today. I think the world watching that would see a team with so much spirit and so much quality.

“It showed you the character in this group to come back, to get our composure again and to score a brilliant goal.

“We were well on top in the first half, 2-0 up and could have been more. But they have got top players, and top players respond and show character and they got themselves back into the game.

“I said before the game that it was a significant game and it may end up being a significant one, but we’ve got Norwich next week.

“It’s about enjoying this because Man City are a wonderful team. We’ll recover well and we’re not going to vary from what we’ve always done, which is to concentrate on the next opponent.”

Liverpool 3 – 2 Man City

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Philippe Coutinho fired the decisive shot to round off a nailbiting game of football at Anfield, with the Reds running out 3-2 winners over Manchester City.

Liverpool had gained a 2-0 advantage before their opponents clawed their way back into the game, but the little Brazilian was on cue to capitalise on a mistake from the City defence and secure the three points.

Brendan Rodgers decided to stick with the same starting XI that successfully seen off West Ham the previous week, with Daniel Agger returning to the Liverpool substitutes bench.

The start of the game had been delayed for six minutes as a mark of respect to the victims of the Hillsborough disaster, followed by a one-minute silence – which was observed impeccably – to honour their memory. The Kop held up a special mosaic reading ’96 – 25 years’ in tribute.

The atmosphere at Anfield was electric, with every Liverpool touch being met with cheers whilst every time the opposition got the ball a sea of whistles was all that could be heard.

One major concern from some fans before the game was that the Reds would show too much respect to their opponents, but that fear was put to bed from the minute the game started as Liverpool went on the offensive from the word go.

Their endeavour was rewarded early on as Raheem Sterling found himself with the ball in the box. A clever shimmy was enough to wrong-foot Joe Hart in the Man City goal and allow the youngster an easy finish into an open net.


Sterling was in the thick of the action again on the quarter-hour mark, as he played a low cross into the penalty area which Daniel Sturridge was unable to get a solid foot on, firing past the far post.

Home fans were certain their side had secured a two-goal advantage when STeven Gerrard was left free in the box from a corner, but Hart was up to the challenge and tipped his headed shot over. The City stopper could do nothing from the resulting corer though, as Martin Skrtel rose to loop a header into the far corner to double Liverpool’s lead.

The away side finally started to get into the game as the half drew on, but the Reds were able to stand firm to take their two-goal advantage into the half-time break.

The home side started the second half brightly, but failed to add to their lead. As the half drew on the visitors started to get into the game more, and on 57 minutes they clawed a goal back.

David Silva’s tap-in was followed just five minutes later by an equaliser, and again it was the Spaniard in the thick of the action. City did well to retain possession in the Liverpool penalty area for a sustained time, and eventually fed a chance for their number 21 which deflected in via Glen Johnson.

The equaliser kicked Liverpool back into action, and the Reds started to put together some good passages of play as they looked to regain the lead.

The breakthrough moment came on 78 minutes as Vincent Kompany made a hash of clearing his lines from a throw-in and played the ball into the path of Coutinho, who made no mistake in making the most of the gift and rifling his shot home.

The closing exchanges saw a few heart in mouth moments for home fans, but the Liverpool back line was able to stand firm to make it ten wins in ten. The title march goes on!

Harry Kewell retires

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Australian International Harry Kewell has retired at the age of 35.

kewellThe Australian winger made 98 appearances and scored 12 goals during his time playing for the Reds.

After refusing offers from Milan, Chelsea, and Barcelona, Kewell joined the reds in 2003 and collected winners medals in both the 2005 European Cup (becoming the only Australian footballer to have done so) and 2006 FA Cup finals.

Kewell departed Merseyside for Turkish champions Galatasaray in 2008 where he stayed for three years until his homecoming for Australian A-League side Melbourne Victory in August of 2011.

Thank you for your service, Harry.

You’ll Never Walk Alone

Brendan: ‘There’s a real feel of the old Liverpool’

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Brendan Rodgers has called on the Liverpool fans to play their part when the Reds welcome Manchester City to Anfield for Sunday’s title showdown.

Rodgers table topping side know they can go seven points of Manuel Pellegrini’s team with a win on Sunday, and the Liverpool boss believes the fans are set to give his side a huge advantage.

the Kop

“The beauty for us is that this game is at Anfield,” Rodgers told the reporters who packed into the press room at Melwood on Friday afternoon.

“It’s a special place to play football. We will unleash the supporters this weekend on the opponent and it’s a very, very difficult place now for people to come and play.

“I sense a real nostalgia about the place at the moment. There’s a real feel of the old Liverpool and I’ll always respect that, but it’s important that it helps drive us forward in the future as a motivation rather than a hindrance.”

The Reds head into the game on a nine match winning streak, having thrashed Arsenal, Manchester United and Tottenham on route to the top of the Premier League.

But Rodgers was keen to stress that the players remain calm and focused on the task in hand, despite the hype surrounding their recent form.

“I’m very fortunate to be surrounded by an outstanding team of professional people,” continued the Northern Irishman.

“It’s unfair to single out any one. Steve Peters has come in and ultimately I have a belief in that sort of mental fitness of players and environment and he’s come in and done a great job in supporting us in that.

“At this stage of the season, every person is important. From the people who work in our canteen, to the girls on the front reception, to the players. This is very much a team effort here.”

 

Suarez explains the ‘Hulk’ celebration

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Liverpool fans have been used to seeing Luis Suarez celebrating goals this season, but some may have noticed a new celebration that has recently been added to the Uruguayan’s repertoire.

Suarez has served up his own version of Marvel superhero the Hulk in victories over Stoke City and Manchester United this season, but what is the meaning behind his latest goal celebration?

Suarez - Hulk celebration

“My daughter loves football, and she likes when I score a goal and celebrate,” Suarez explained.

“She loves princesses and things like that, but I can’t do it [for a celebration] on the pitch!

“But she also likes Hulk, Spiderman and Superman. I told her when I score, I’d do a celebration like Hulk or Superman, so it’s for her. She watches on TV and loves when I do it.”

Suarez is just three goals shy of breaking the all time Premier League record for a 38 game season.

The 27-year-old is on 29 Premier League goals heading into this weekend’s title showdown with Manchester City, but insists reaching that milestone is not at the forefront of his mind.

“If I wanted to do that, I could ask Stevie if I could take a penalty, but I don’t like that!” he said.

“For myself, it is more important that Liverpool finish in a good position. I try in every game to score because I am a striker. I love to make goals, but for me if I could swap being top scorer or winning the Golden Boot for the team finishing in the top four, that would be more important.

“Of course it would be special [to break the record]. In the last few years I have tried to do my job as well as I can to help the team and the Liverpool supporters.

“To finish the season as top scorer or with a new record would be nice for me, for my family and for the Liverpool supporters because it’s important for them to have a player who holds the record. But if I think back a few games, I didn’t score, but I kept trying my best on the pitch.”

 

Rodgers: ‘Awards are a great reward for Luis and Stevie’

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Brendan Rodgers has described the decision to jointly award Luis Suarez and Steven Gerrard the player of the month award for March as ‘a great reward’ for the pair.

Rodgers himself scooped the manager of the month award for March, a month which saw the Reds record victories over Southampton, Manchester United, Cardiff, Sunderland and Tottenham to go top of the Premier League.

Player/Manager of the month for March

Such was the level of performance by both the club captain and the Premier League’s top scorer, the panel could not come to a decision, so the award was happily shared by both Suarez and Gerrard at Melwood.

“I’ve got to be honest, there are probably a number of players in the Liverpool team that could have had the award,” the Northern Irishman said.

“But for the two guys, it is great reward for their efforts. Luis has been incredible in that period, with his goalscoring and relentless work-rate.

“And Stevie, I’m really pleased for him; people might have looked at Stevie this season as a swansong season leading into the World Cup. But I never felt that at all.

“I always felt he was going to have a big impact in the role he’s in, purely because of his quality and intelligence. He has been really consistent throughout the course of the season, with his goals, but his playmaking ability from behind really gives the team a different dimension.

“That was always the plan. It’s great to see him out there enjoying his football and picking up rewards along the way.”

LFC reveal new 2014/15 home kit

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Liverpool Football Club have today revealed their home kit for the 2014/15 season.

Home Kit Main Campaign Image

The kit – released under the campaign title ‘Demand’ – is a simplistic red design that is sure to be met with approval by fans of traditional Liverpool kits.

Like last year, the kit features a tribute to the victims of the Hillsborough disaster – a ’96’ emblem flanked by two eternal flames on the nape of the neck.

lfc

The kit was modeled by Simon Mignolet, Kolo Toure, Jordan Henderson & Philippe Coutinho at the launch event in Liverpool city centre this evening, and the response of fans was overwhelmingly positive.

I really like the kit, it’s the best one yet!

Marcus, 12 years old

Well as long as it’s got the Liverbird on it’s always great, but I do like this kit – nice & simple like it should be.

Ian, local resident

Click here to pre-order the new kit for guaranteed delivery on the May 9th release date, and receive an exclusive Liverpool FC towel as a free gift!

Dalglish hails Gerrard as a ‘shining example’

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Steven Gerrard’s brace of penalties in the 2-1 win over West Ham at Upton Park on Sunday not only earned the Reds another crucial three points in the race for the Premier League table, but also took the Reds skipper above Kenny Dalglish in the clubs all time list of top goal scorers.

Gerrard now sits sixth in the all time list with 173 strikes to his name, and the man he overtook paid a glowing tribute to the Liverpool captain ahead of Sunday’s title showdown with Manchester City.

Steven Gerrard

Dalglish said: “He has been fantastic for the football club and he’s a great example for everybody.

“He’s a fantastic statesman; he has been unbelievably successful at this football club with what he’s done, the amount of games he has pulled out of the mire, and the general way he conducts himself.

“He’s really matured over the years; carrying the captaincy for Liverpool Football Club is quite an onerous job and I think he does it remarkably well.

“It’s admirable the way he conducts himself and his interviews. What he does on the pitch is a shining example to everybody else round about him.”

The Reds are on a run of nine straight Premier League victories, whilst Gerrard has contributed seven goals in that period to help Brendan Rodgers side climb to the top of the table.

“The club has got the feeling back that it used to have – and that’s fantastic,” Dalglish continued.

“Everybody is in it together, and I think that’s a fantastic asset that has been installed in the players. Brendan has done a fantastic job, bringing them all together and getting them all playing for and with each other.

“Off the pitch, the football club is very healthy as well. Everything is moving onwards and upwards, and hopefully it continues.”

Dalglish was also keen to stress that whilst he would be disappointed to see the Reds miss out on the title, you cannot underestimate what an achievement it would be to bring Champions League football back to Anfield.

He added: “If Liverpool don’t win the title, it will be disappointing because you’ve got so close and tried to win it – but it’s a fantastic achievement to get in the Champions League.

“Everybody would love to see us getting in the Champions League, and if they can do it then that would be fantastic. Anything else, over and above that, would be a real bonus.”

 

 

 

Suarez: We’re not getting carried away

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Luis Suarez admits he is delighted Liverpool fans are dreaming of winning the Premier League title this season, but insists he and his teammates are refusing to get carried away.

Suarez has been unstoppable at times for Liverpool this season, with his 29 Premier League goals playing a huge part in their push for the title.

Luis Suarez

He told Match magazine: “We’re not getting carried away with the talk of a possible trophy.

“It’s obviously nice for the fans to believe and be excited.

“But it’s our responsibility as players to concentrate on the next team we face, do our best on the pitch and we’ll see what happens in May.”

The Uruguayan enjoyed another magnificent month in March, scoring his sixth hat-trick for the club in the 6-3 win over Cardiff City, as well as the third in the 3-0 win over Manchester United at Old Trafford.

When asked about his favourite moment of a month that bought about six goals, the Uruguayan pointed to his second strike against Cardiff, and a cheeky assist from his strike partner Daniel Sturridge.

He added: “I’ll go for the hat-trick against Cardiff and keeping the match ball as my biggest achievement of the month.

“That was my sixth hat-trick since joining Liverpool. The goal where Daniel Sturridge back-heeled the ball for the assist was probably my favourite goal of the lot.”