Competition for places, Wilson, & bizarre Sturridge claim – Wednesday’s Liverpool FC News Roundup

We round up the latest Liverpool news and transfer rumours on Wednesday, as Jurgen Klopp‘s side host Chelsea in the League Cup third round at Anfield this evening.

Main Headlines

Moreno Competition for Places

BIRKENHEAD, ENGLAND - Tuesday, July 10, 2018: Liverpool's Alberto Moreno during a preseason friendly match between Tranmere Rovers FC and Liverpool FC at Prenton Park. (Pic by Paul Greenwood/Propaganda)

Alberto Moreno‘s first appearance of the season could come against the Blues this evening, having been left on the substitutes’ bench six times already in 2018/19.

The Spaniard told Liverpoolfc.com that not playing regularly can be tough but says this is the best Liverpool squad he has been a part of:

“No player likes to be sat on the bench or out of the squad, but then it motivates you to keep working hard and battling for your place, and that’s what I’m doing every day.

“Since I’ve been here we’ve had some really strong squads, but this is the most complete and the biggest.

“We have a lot of players who are all top quality, and I think that helps the team to perform as they are doing.

“We’re doing really well and that means that no player will be taking their foot off the gas, we’ll all be working at 100 per cent to win our place in the team and play as much as possible, which is what we all want.”

He’s been on the bench in recent games but will surely start this evening.

Henderson Echoes Moreno’s Sentiment

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, September 22, 2018: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp issues instructions to captain Jordan Henderson during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Southampton FC at Anfield. (Pic by Jon Super/Propaganda)

Captain Jordan Henderson was another who spoke about the healthy competition for places.

The 28-year-old writes in his matchday programme column that the quality within the squad is keeping everyone on their toes:

“For all the talk of rival teams, the biggest motivation for us at the moment to keep performing and keep winning comes from within our own group.

“I don’t need to look to Manchester or London to remind me that I have to give everything when on the pitch – I just have to look at the lads in our dressing room.

“It doesn’t matter at the moment whether you are starting or coming on. You know as a player in this team that you have a responsibility to perform to the highest level every opportunity you are given.

“Because if you don’t there is someone else ready and deserving to step in. Long may that continue.”

Redknapp Lauds “Fantastic” Wilson Goal

Derby County's Harry Wilson celebrates scoring his side's first goal of the game (Richard Sellers/EMPICS Sport)

Harry Wilson helped Derby County dump Man United out of the League Cup on Tuesday, scoring an outrageous free-kick to level the scores.

Frank Lampard’s side eventually progressed on penalties – Wilson scored his spot-kick in the shootout – and somebody who lauded the on-loan Liverpool youngster was Jamie Redknapp.

“The free-kick is one of the greatest free-kicks I have ever seen,” said Redknapp, in the Sky Sports studio.

“You know when you see great goals? I think of Roberto Carlos’ one when he hits that one and that one tonight is one to take your breath away. That was a fantastic goal.

“You don’t get bored of seeing these! It bamboozles the goalkeeper, he doesn’t know where he is going!”

Bizarre Sturridge Claim

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, August 25, 2018: Liverpool's Daniel Sturridge applauds the supporters after the 1-0 victory during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Brighton & Hove Albion FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

It appears as though Kevin Keegan never rated Daniel Sturridge as a footballer – if recent claims made by former Newcastle United vice-president Tony Jimenez are to be believed.

Speaking to the Times, Jimenez said the Liverpool legend wanted nothing to do with Sturridge when he was Newcastle boss, specifically in January 2008:

“The minute you questioned him he lost the plot.

“During that window we offered him the players that we were working on when we thought Harry Redknapp was coming as manager — Jermain Defoe, Peter Crouch, Lassana Diarra — and he said none of them were good enough.

“The other player we were really keen on was Daniel Sturridge. He said he’d had him as a kid at Man City and that he wasn’t good enough for League One.”

Sturridge has scored 65 goals in 138 Liverpool appearances and winning 26 England caps. Whether this claim on Keegan is hugely accurate should probably be taken with a pinch of salt!

Heskey On Prioritising League Cup

BANGKOK, THAILAND - Thailand. Thursday, July 24, 2003: Liverpool's Emile Heskey in action against Thailand during a preseason friendly match at the Rajamangala National Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Liverpool last won silverware in 2012, defeating Cardiff City on penalties in the League Cup final.

Although some supporters feel the Premier League remains the priority this season, regardless of whether or not the Reds end up winning the title, Emile Heskey believes the League Cup should be a main point of focus.

“I think it should be a priority, as a player and as a manager you should be wanting to win as many cups as possible,” Heskey told Quest TV.

“I left Leicester to go to Liverpool to try and win more trophies, I’ve been to three League cup finals with Leicester and wanted to win more and knew I would have more chances to do that at Liverpool.

“I think they should see this as the first of many trophies to come, and they should really do their very best not only to win this game but also the tournament.”

It is a debate that is sure to rumble on among fans, with some seeing a League Cup triumph less impressive than narrowly finishing second behind City, for example.

Trophies should never be sniffed at, though, especially considering Liverpool’s current drought.

Canos On Turning Down Reds Contract

WEST BROMWICH, ENGLAND - Sunday, May 15, 2016: Liverpool's Sergi Canos in action against West Bromwich Albion during the final Premier League match of the season at the Hawthorns. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Big things were expected of Sergi Canos at Liverpool, but he never quite made the grade, appearing just once, away to West Brom in May 2016.

The 21-year-old has revealed to the Guardian that he was given a new long-term contract at Anfield, but signing on the dotted line never felt right:

“I took the decision I didn’t want to sign a new contract with Liverpool.

“They offered me five years more but I didn’t want to. I didn’t want to be one more; I wanted to be important and I didn’t want to go on loan again.

“To sign for five more years at Liverpool, it meant that my career was going to depend on Liverpool, them making decisions for me.

“They didn’t offer me the opportunity to try and train and play for the first team. I made my debut but it wasn’t a good thing, I don’t think. It was a good thing because then they could sell me for £2.5m to Norwich.”

Canos is now thriving in a Brentford team gaining new admirers in the Championship – he will no doubt have one eye on facing the Reds in the Premier League next season.

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