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End of season awards

With the season now over, I wanted to hand out my own end of season awards to the Liverpool team. So here they are:

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By Tariq Saleh

With the season now over, I wanted to hand out my own end of season awards to the Liverpool team. So here they are:

Player of the season:

Lucas Leiva – After being criticised so much in his first few years at Anfield, Lucas finally won over the Liverpool fans with a string of consistent performances this season. Lucas has been a mainstay in the team this season and has been one of a handful of players who have performed on a consistent level. Despite not offering many goals his enthusiasm, passing and ball winning ability has shown that he can match up to the best of midfielders in the Premier League. With the departures of Xabi Alonso and Javier Mascherano and an injury hit season for Steven Gerrard, it was up to Lucas to finally prove his worth and he stepped up and made the central midfield position his own.  

Young player of the season:

Jay Spearing – Ever since Kenny Dalglish took the job, one of the first things he looked to do was to involve Spearing in the first team a lot more. He showed his confidence in him by starting him against Everton in the merseyside derby at Anfield. Spearing has taken that confidence given to him by Dalglish and became a regular in the team for the remaining few months of the season, putting in a string of hard working displays. Spearing didn’t manage to score or create many chances but his energy and work rate made him a hit with the Liverpool fans. His performances also earned him a call up to the England Under-21 squad for this summer’s European championships.

Signing of the season:

Luis Suarez – Despite only arriving in January, Suarez is definitely Liverpool’s signing of the season. The decision to sell Fernando Torres turned out to be a work of genius as Suarez more than filled the gap left by the Spaniard. He scored 4 goals and put in a number of fantastic performances, most notably against Manchester United at Anfield. His energy and skill really endeared him to the reds’ fans and they will be looking for him to get the club back into the Champions League next season and challenge for honours.

Flop of the season:

Paul Konchesky – The full back, signed from Fulham in the summer by Roy Hodgson, turned out to be one of the worst signings Liverpool have made in recent seasons. He never established himself at Liverpool and his confidence always took a beating as he endured negative comments from Liverpool fans, which led to his mum lashing out at them via Twitter. Konchesky spent the latter half of the season on loan at Championship side Nottingham Forest and it seems as though his time at Liverpool is at an end.

Most Improved player:

Dirk Kuyt – Kuyt has always been a key figure in the Liverpool side, but with the arrival of Suarez he managed to add several goals to his name. Kuyt was always praised for his work rate but was often criticised for not scoring enough goals, despite being a striker by trade. Kuyt was deployed as a right winger by both Rafa Benitez and Roy Hodgson but Kenny Dalglish managed to bring Kuyt back to his natural position, largely thanks to the unselfish work of Luis Suarez who loves working the flanks, allowing Kuyt to come inside. Kuyt ended the season with 15 goals; his highest ever tally for Liverpool in a single season.

Goal of the season:

Raul Meireles – There was no other real contender. Meireles’ wonder strike against Wolves at Molineux in January was the pick of the bunch.

One to watch:

Raheem Sterling – 16 year old Raheem Sterling is a huge prospect at Liverpool and the club have high hopes for him. Signed from QPR at the age of 15, he has been making a name for himself in the Liverpool youth team. In a FA Youth Cup match in February, he scored 5 goals and displayed an electrifying turn of pace and good finishing ability. After this performance he was named in the Liverpool squad that travelled to Sparta Prague in the Europa League. H e has been likened to Theo Walcott because of his pace and he is a player to watch out in a few years, he may even break into the senior Liverpool side next season.

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Liverpool youngster picks up ankle ligament damage during loan spell

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Marko Grujic

Marko Grujic

Liverpool youngster Marko Grujic has picked up ankle ligament damage during Hertha Berlin’s 4-2 win over Borussia Monchengladbach, as per Sky Sports.

The Serbian midfielder joined the Bundesliga side on a loan deal and has played four games for them. Hertha are currently second in the competition behind Bayern Munich with 10 points from four games.

Hertha’s general manager Michael Preetz was quoted by Sky Sports saying.

“Marko has managed to make a significant difference to our game in the short time he has been with us, which is why the loss for him personally and for us is very, very bitter.

“Now we will look after him and help him, so that he can play that role as soon as possible.”

The report adds that the midfielder had signed a new deal with the Reds before joining the Bundesliga side on loan and was part of the Serbian World Cup squad in Russia.

Grujic had a huge role to play in Cardiff’s promotion to the Premier League last season and did well in his three starts for Hertha this term.

Read more: “Legend”, “Never leave” – Some Liverpool fans want star to extend stay after brilliant start

It will come as a bit of a blow for the youngster to miss out on game time but hopefully, he will not be out for long and return to full fitness quickly.

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(Video) Mohamed Salah hands Liverpool jersey to tearful young fan after win over Saints

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Mohamed Salah got on the scoresheet against Southampton over the weekend but also there was another moment that is being spoken about on social media.

The Egyptian broke his mini-drought as he scored from Xherdan Shaqiri’s free-kick and he also had a few chances to make it two in the game.

The former AS Roma forward hasn’t been at his free-scoring best from last season but is slowly regaining his mojo in front of the goal.

Wayne Dunlop posted a video of his son on Twitter. The child was holding up a sign after the match at Anfield and Salah gave the youngster his shirt from the game.

It is an emotional video of the Twitter user’s son, Lewis, tearing up as the Egyptian hands him the shirt he wore during the game.

Salah even responded to the video uploaded and Wayne was very happy that his son received such a fantastic piece of memorabilia from Anfield.

The Egyptian is one of the best footballers in the world but it is moments like these that ensure the fans love players more.

Salah could have ignored the young fan and walked down the tunnel but he took time out to make the fan happy.

The Reds lead the Premier League standings at the moment, having won all six of their clashes in the Premier League so far.

Read more: Liverpool create history: Five talking points from emphatic 3-0 win over Southampton

The 25-year-old is yet to hit top gear but it only seems like a matter of time before the goals start raining for the Liverpool forward.

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Jurgen Klopp dispels injury concern after surprise substitution against Southampton

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Xherdan Shaqiri

Xherdan Shaqiri started for Liverpool in the clash against Southampton and was instrumental in our a 3-0 lead at half-time.

His shot was turned into the net by Wesley Hoedt for our first goal and his free-kick was slotted into an open net by Mohamed Salah for our third.

It was a little surprising that Jurgen Klopp decided to take the Swiss star off at half-time and replace him with James Milner.

Shaqiri was our most impressive attacker on Saturday as he played an advanced role behind our front three.

However, Milner came onto the pitch and we played with three central midfielders, something Klopp has used to great effect throughout his time at Liverpool.

The German spoke to the club’s official website as he explained he wanted more control in the game and that’s why he took Shaqiri off.

“I said to Shaq at half-time that I had never brought a player off after such an influential time without an injury. He is not injured. But I wanted to control the game and go back to our normal formation. And that helped, we really controlled it.”

The manager further added that it was not easy to make the change, given how influential Shaqiri was in the first half.

Klopp did explain the change to Shaq but playing the Swiss star had an impact on our defence and that was a problem for the manager.

“The only problem was defensively. Offensively, it was a good idea but, how I said, we have to work on that more often. But he was good and I liked it.”

Read more: Shaqiri shines: Player ratings as Liverpool defeat Southampton 3-0

The 26-year-old had a fantastic game and it will be great to see him play more games if he can have the same sort of impact in the coming months.

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