Brendan Rodgers revealed how he received a text message from Luis Suarez on Sunday morning wishing his former club all the best for their first game of the new season against Southampton.
Ahead of Liverpool’s 2-1 opening-weekend victory over the Saints, the Uruguayan, who joined Barcelona earlier this summer after three and a half years at Anfield, sent his support to his ex-colleagues.
Rodgers explained the gesture to reporters in his post-match press conference following the clash, during which he also reiterated his desire to add another striker to the Reds ranks before the close of the transfer window.
When asked how he felt Liverpool would fare without Suarez this season, the boss said:
“Our ambitions here at Liverpool, they have to be bigger than one player – I’ve said that repeatedly. Big clubs will lose players. Our ambition is bigger than Luis. He sent us a lovely text this morning wishing us all the best and that [he hopes] we start strong. It was a great gesture. He’s a friend of Liverpool now. But we look forward. We’re bigger than any one single player. I do still think we want another striker. It’s something we’ll look at, but it’ll depend on the availability of one. We’ll search for that through until the end of the window. But you see the players and the quality we have. The fluency will come and today was about the win – and we got the win.”
Asked if he responded to the text message from Suarez, Rodgers replied:
“I did, yes. He’s a good boy, but he’s gone. His heart is with Liverpool and he’ll always be Liverpool. It was a lovely touch.”
Striker Luis Suarez says that he will stay at the club next season whether Liverpool qualifies for the Champions League or not.
Suarez has scored 24 Premier League goals for the current Barclay’s premier league campaign with his latest coming in the 3-0 win over Southampton which helped the Reds move into second place in the table.
The Uruguayan international who recently committed his long term future with the reds claims he is enjoying his best season since arriving at Anfield from Ajax in January 2011.
With Liverpool currently second in the table, six points ahead of fifth-place Tottenham, there is every chance Suarez could achieve his ambition of getting Liverpool back in the top four.
Quizzed whether he would stay at Liverpool if the Reds failed to secure a top-four finishes, Suárez said:
“I think so. I signed my new contract because I’m very happy here and I want to stay where I’m enjoying football and life. Playing in the Champions League isn’t dependent on that. Any player would miss the Champions League. We’ve not been good enough since I’ve been here to qualify, but this could definitely be our year. It would be a frustration not to get fourth because we’ve done everything possible and given our maximum to qualify.”
There is no doubt that the likes of Real Madrid and Bayern Munich will come knocking at Liverpool’s door for Suarez once the season ends.Do you think the Reds will be able to keep hold of Suarez if they miss on top four once again?
Ahead of the Fixture against Crystal palace Liverpool Boss Brendan Rodgers has given an update on team news and the fitness of Glen Johnson, Philippe Coutinho, Aly Cissokho, Joe Allen and Sebastian Coates.
Fullback Johnson has been on out nursing an ankle sprain that he picked up against Liverpool’s 1-0 win over Manchester United while Cissokho and Allen got injured against Notts County in the Capital one cup. Rodgers said:
“Glen’s out on the field and hopefully after the international break he’ll be ready to come back into the squad. We’re okay. Aly Cissokho has trained over the course of the last week or so, so I think after the international break he’ll be fine and fit. Joe Allen likewise – he should be ready for the Newcastle game.”
Rodgers also mentioned that is should not be too much longer after that until we see the return of Coutinho. So for now it looks like Liverpool will have Johnson, Cissokho and Allen returning after the international break.
“Obviously Sebastian Coates will be that bit longer and has a bit more to do yet, but apart from that we’re getting back to our numbers now.”
Liverpool’s new 3-5-2 formation looks tailor made for the retuning Johnson and Coutinho as Johnson can make full use of his attacking talents playing as a wing back and Coutinho, playing behind the front two can provide even more ammunition for Sturridge and Suarez .
Liverpool still need to sort their midfield problems as both Lucas and Gerrard being very similar in their playing styles these days is one of the main reasons the Reds are finding it hard to keep the ball. With Allen and Coutinho returning soon let’s hope Rodgers can find the best midfield combination.
Who would be your best midfield combination?
The Reds got back to winning ways in the Barclays Premier League after a thumping 5-0 win over Norwich City at Anfield on Saturday afternoon. Jordan Henderson’s 26th minute strike gave Liverpool the early lead before a well-worked move saw Luis Suarez double the advantage nine minutes before the break. £12million signing Daniel Sturridge found the net after the break and became the first Liverpool player since Ray Kennedy in 1974 to score in his first three matches. Steven Gerrard and a Ryan Bennett own goal made it a comfortable 5-0 victory.
Boss Brendan Rodgers was pleased to see the exiting partnership between forwards Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge and now believes the Reds have the front two capable of striking fear into any Barclays Premier League defence:
“They linked very, very well. Luis has done what he’s done for us all season. He’s 100 per cent every game. They are both players who are not just static. Daniel’s got pace and power but he’s also clever. That was important for us today. It gives the opponent someone else to really worry about. Suarez has been incredible for us this season and has had some young players up there with him, but we’ve now got a recognized goalscorer up beside him. If you look at the movements between the two of them. The second goal was a wonderful demonstration of how good players can link together.”
What did you think of the match?
New Reds signing Daniel Sturridge has said he will continue to get better, following his debut goal in the FA Cup win at Mansfield.
Sturridge, who hasn’t played a senior game since November, took just seven minutes for his debut against Mansfield to open his account for the Reds.
He said to the Liverpool Echo:
“I am lacking sharpness in front of goal. I missed a few chances but hopefully once I get my fitness those ones that I missed will go in. I was quite tired out there as I haven’t been playing or training much over the last few months. But I’m grateful to the boss for giving me nearly 60 minutes. I haven’t had much training. I’ve only had three sessions with the lads and then a light session on Saturday before the game.”
The 23 year old also praised his new team-mates following the win, but singled out Jonjo Shelvey for his perfectly weighted pass which lead to the striker’s opener:
“It was a great pass from Jonjo – the vision and the weight of the pass for the goal was perfect. He made it quite easy for me to take the shot first time. We haven’t had much time to work on stuff but we were both on the same wavelength. We get on well on and off the field.”
“All the lads have been great with me and they’ve made it easy for me to settle in over the past few days. I want to say thank you to them for making me feel so welcome. I look forward to playing with them for many years to come”
How did everyone rate his opening performance? Do you think Sturridge, Suarez and Sterling can form a lethal partnership upfront?
Liverpool move to the fourth round of FA cup with Daniel Sturridge scoring on his Liverpool debut which helped to beat Mansfield Town 2-1.
Sturridge who just signed from Chelsea, took the lead in just seven minutes while Suarez made it 2-0 after just four minutes on the pitch replacing Sturridge in the 55th minute.
Rodgers said in his press conference.
“We’ve seen over many years in this competition that these games are very difficult. In some ways, they can be more difficult than Premier League games. It’s a big credit to my players; I thought we showed great character. The game could have been out of sight in the first half with the chances we had. But you’ve also got to give credit to Mansfield because at 2-0 they kept the game alive. There were periods in the second half where we had to show resilience and character. We’ve seen it over the years in this competition, the big teams going to away grounds of a lower league opponent and coming unstuck.”
Thankfully we got through and into the next round.
Does Liverpool need strengthening? Of course it does. But Luis Suarez is doing a good job of trying to hide this fact.
That second goal should have never been but Suarez had one thing in mind. He got bumped off by Carlos Cuellar, regained his balance, and then as the defender collapsed in a heap corralled the ball and put the burners on. The Uruguayan came at Simone Mignolet from an angle and finished off with superb placement.
Last season Suarez seemed to struggle, missing an awful lot of good opportunities, but this season it seems harder for him to miss at the moment. Liverpool climb to eighth and they could go a lot higher if they can continue this form.