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LFC players round up, final group games

Captain fantastic, Steven Gerrard, was at his very best against UkraineOut of Liverpool’s 7 representatives at Euro 2012, only 4 managed to make an appearance in the final round of games of the tournament’s group stages, one of those being a 7 minute cameo for big Andy Carroll at the end of England’s crucial 1-0 victory over co-hosts Ukraine.

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By Christopher Burn

Captain fantastic, Steven Gerrard, was at his very best against UkraineOut of Liverpool’s 7 representatives at Euro 2012, only 4 managed to make an appearance in the final round of games of the tournament’s group stages, one of those being a 7 minute cameo for big Andy Carroll at the end of England’s crucial 1-0 victory over co-hosts Ukraine.

Andy Carroll

I will start this round up with Andy Carroll, I was somewhat irked by his exclusion from the starting line-up for Tuesday night’s encounter with the Ukrainians, with a goal in the win against Sweden capping a fine performance leading England’s Front line I thought he was surely a shoe in. Roy Hodgson will have his reasons for leaving big Andy on the bench, one of them being quite understandable, Rooney, one of England’s mainstays coming back into the side needed a partner and Roy would obviously believe that his club strike partner would provide the best combination, like I say understandable.

Andy Carroll came into the game with 7 minutes remaining of normal time, replacing Wellbeck , who in my opinion appeared yet again to be out of his depth at International level. Wellbeck is clearly a talented player, but so far has somewhat failed to make his presence known to the defenders of the three other teams that make up Group D, Carroll reminded us in his short 7 minute run out that he has no such problem, he put himself about, instantly putting pressure on the backline of Ukraine, winning aerial battles, putting in well timed challenges, holding the ball and bringing the midfield players into the game. There were also shouts for a penalty as Andy was shoved to the ground when the Ukranians resorted to fouling the big man, not being able to meet his power in the air.

Only 7 minutes but yet another encouraging performance in front of the watching world, surely a shout for the Italy game.

Glen Johnson

Glen Johnson, another one of England’s Mr. Dependables at the back. Ukraine were barely a threat down the England right, mainly down to Johnson’s reliability, something that seems be missing in the eyes of many England supporters. Glen was always tight to his man, ensuring that a pass or cross worth of note was possible, he never looked flustered on the ball either, finding his England teammates with consummate ease as he had in the previous two matches.

Glen Johnson, much like Ashley Cole on the left is more noted for his ability going forward, overlapping and getting quality crosses into the forwards, he did not provide much of this part of his game on Tuesday night, venturing forward only a handful of times as Roy clearly put the shackles on him and likewise with Cole on the other side, not losing being the mantra. Glen however managed to venture forward a few times and supplied 3 Successful crosses and won 2 free kicks in the final third.

Glen is clearly a top notch Right Back and has been one of Englands better performers so far, offering a cool head and reliable defensive work, an obvious choice to start at right back in the Quarter Final.

Daniel Agger

Switching to Denmark for a moment, a team that includes our very own super Danny Agger. In my opinion Agger has so far been the tournaments best defender in one of the tournaments worst defenses, he has never put a foot wrong and has prevented Denmark from being on the end of some heavy defeats.

In Denmark’s third and final game of the Euros, Agger was Denmark’s stand out performer, making several last ditch tackles to halt the German’s impressive attack, cleaning up mistakes made by his Centre Back Partner Kjear and covering the gaping hole left by his ill disciplined Left Back Poulsen. On a number of Occasions Danny Agger went head to head with Gomez in the air and came out on top as well as making a nuisance of himself in the opposition area from set pieces.

What we know Agger for at Liverpool is his ball playing prowess, his ability to bring the ball out of the back and start an attack, he didn’t hide any of this ability as he played pass after pass after pass, whilst under the tireless chasing pressure of the German forwards.

I am definitely looking forward to seeing Danny Agger produce the same type of performances in the red shirt of Liverpool next season as part of a good Brendan Rodgers passing side.

Steven Gerrard

Wow, yet again Super Stevie G shows the world why he is Captain Fantastic, putting in another top class performance, leading his team to victory in an inspiring way. Stevie has easily been England’s best player so far and certainly was in the final group game Vs Ukraine, playing a fifth of England’s passes at a success rate of 90.6%. Our Captain along with Parker worked very hard at protecting the England back line, he put in several good challenges, only giving away one foul (probably very unlucky to have seen the foul given and the yellow card received for it).

Stats are stats and only tell so much of a story, Stevie G’s leadership cannot be described solely by stats but also by what we see with our own eyes, throughout the game against Ukraine he was a constant communicator, telling his colleagues exactly where to be, where to pass, to pick up their effort. But Gerrard also leads by example, chasing a lost cause or injecting that one moment of quality, this came when in the 48th minute he found himself in possession of the ball on the right channel, he incredibly turned the hapless Ukrainian fullback inside out with a delicate touch and a powerful stride before delivering a devastating ball into the heart of the Ukrainian penalty area, such was the quality of the delivery even 3 defenders and a goalkeeper failed to deal with it enough to prevent the returning Wayne Rooney from greatfully  nodding home from close range.

So going into Sundays Quarter Final match Vs Italy we know one thing, Super Stevie G will be there to rely on, to drag us and his team through their challenge, whatever the outcome may be.

Let us know your thoughts by commenting below, by Facebook or tweeting us @TheKopTimes2

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“It’s time for a change right now” – Former USA international urges Liverpool target to leave Bundesliga giants

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Christian Pulisic

Christian Pulisic

Borussia Dortmund winger Christian Pulisic has been told that it is time for a change, with the January window around the corner.

The American was a target for Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp in 2016 (h/t Liverpool Echo), but the Reds had their offer rejected by the Bundesliga giants.

The Liverpool Echo adds that the Reds have kept tabs on the 20-year-old and Chelsea are also interested in signing the winger.

Former United States international Alexi Lalas believes it is time for the winger to leave Dortmund for bigger things in the future.

The American told Colin Cowherd (h/t Liverpool Echo):

“There are teams all over the world that would love to have Christian Pulisic right now. I think he’s done a great job in going over to Germany, he’s done a great job at Borussia Dortmund.

“But I think it’s time for a change right now for Christian Pulisic, and a change to an even higher profile team.”

The report adds that the American is out of contract in 2020 and should he refuse to extend his stay at Dortmund, the club could sell him in the coming window.

Christian Pulisic

Christian Pulisic

Liverpool could do with someone like Pulisic in their side, and he would certainly do well under his former boss Klopp.

The American is one of the bright players in the Bundesliga but hasn’t been great in the current campaign for Borussia Dortmund.

Read more: “I was alive in the time of Mo Salah…” – Some Liverpool fans go crazy after Salah’s Bournemouth hat-trick

The youngster has been upstaged by Jadon Sancho, who is playing better than him at the moment.

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“I rate him among the very best at the top” – Liverpool star heaps praise on teammate after Bournemouth win

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James Milner of Liverpool

James Milner

Liverpool star Georginio Wijnaldum believes James Milner is one of the best players in the world and praised the versatility of the 32-year-old.

The Englishman played his 500th Premier League game for the Reds in our 4-0 win over Bournemouth and even captained the side as Jordan Henderson was on the bench.

Speaking after the game, Wijnaldum was all praise for the Englishman, who play at right-back on Saturday (h/t Mirror):

“Which player in the world can you play in every position in a team and he will do really well in all of those positions? There is no-one, apart from Milner.

“He has played in so many different roles — and he is always brilliant. That’s why I rate him among the very best at the top, I really do.”

James Milner

James Milner

The Dutchman added that Milner always puts his 100% on the pitch, which is good for the team.

“What Milner is capable of at this level, I have never seen other players do that. Milner will always get great marks, no matter on what position our manager puts him.”

The midfielder has been used all around the park by Jurgen Klopp. The former Leeds United star even played a majority of a season as our first-choice left-back ahead of Alberto Moreno during the 2016/17 season.

The 32-year-old has only gotten better with each season under his belt and Wijnaldum highlighted the professionalism of the midfielder.

“Some players can get frustrated when they have to switch positions. But with Milner, you will never see a mood swing. His attitude just stays the same.”

Read more: Liverpool contact Paris Saint-Germain over out-of-contract Frenchman

The Reds play Napoli in a huge Champions League clash, and we can be sure that Milner will give his 100% on the pitch.

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“It’s like one of those goals you’d see Maradona score” – BBC commentators in awe of Liverpool star in 4-0 win over Bournemouth

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Mohamed Salah of Liverpool

Mohamed Salah

Liverpool star Mohamed Salah scored a hat-trick against Bournemouth in our 4-0 win on Saturday. His first two goals were great but the third one was a thing of beauty.

The Egyptian rounded the Cherries goalkeeper Asmir Begovic twice, before beating a couple of players on the goal-line.

The 26-year-old won a lot of plaudits for the goal, and one BBC commentator claimed this goal had an air of “Diego Maradona” about it.

Conor McNamara raved about Salah’s goal on BBC 5 Live (h/t Express):

“You don’t see that often. He goes around the goalkeeper twice, he’s calmness personified. It’s like one of those goals you’d see Maradona score in the 80s.

“It was the sort of flick you do if you’re playing with your nephews in the back garden or something ‘lets flick it passed you no problem’, he just sort of nonchalantly scored.”

Mohamed Salah Virgil van Dijk Liverpool

Former Chelsea midfielder Steve Sidwell compared it to a classic goal scored by Ricky Villa for Tottenham, while McNamara claimed the goal was “outrageous” and showed just how confident Salah is of his abilities.

“You go around the goalkeeper and he’s thinking hang on a minute, I’ve done it once, I’ll do it again.”

The Egyptian is peaking into form at the right time, which is perfect for us as we look to make it to the next round of the Champions League.

Read more: “Calms my nerves so much” – Some Liverpool fans go crazy as summer signing breaks record after Bournemouth win

The Reds face Napoli at Anfield on Tuesday, where we need a 1-0 win or a two-goal difference win (if the Italians score).

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