FA statement, and Minamino knows where he must improve – Monday’s Liverpool FC News

Liverpool are having to deal with significant fall-out after an FA Cup draw led Jurgen Klopp to declare he wouldn’t manage and his first-team wouldn’t play in the replay.


FA fume that managers don’t like their stupid decisions

You know the score by now: FA Cup fourth-round replays are due to take place for most teams in the first week of the so-called winter break, a winter break which now contains a fixture for the Reds.

Klopp immediately said post-game that neither he nor his team would be around for the game, leaving it to the kids and U23 boss Neil Critchley, but the FA are unimpressed.

They say all teams were made aware that replays would be played at this time, apparently believing that insulates them from the stupidity of the decision to, er, plan matches during a break:

FA Statement:

“The FA went to great lengths to create an annual mid-season player break, working closely with the Premier League and its clubs.

“It is a new and significant addition to the English football calendar and is designed to benefit clubs and their players.

“To accommodate the annual mid-season player break, the FA rescheduled the fifth round to midweek and removed fifth-round replays from the calendar. This allowed the Premier League room in its calendar to have a split round of fixtures over two weekends.

“Prior to the start of the 2019-20 season, all clubs accepted that FA Cup fourth-round replays, where required, would have to take place during the first week of the mid-season player break.

“This will only affect a small number of clubs due to the split of Premier League fixtures in the mid-season player break.”

Of course, it’s only Klopp getting pelters for his comments, even though Steve Bruce and others have similarly pointed out the lunacy of the situation. Then again, only Klopp said he wasn’t turning up…


Minamino wants self-improvement

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, January 5, 2020: Liverpool's new signing Japan international Takumi Minamino during the pre-match warm-up before the FA Cup 3rd Round match between Liverpool FC and Everton FC, the 235th Merseyside Derby, at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Our new boy was unable to shine at the weekend, flitting in and out of the game and eventually subbed off on his second start for the club.

There’s lots more to come from Takumi Minamino, but he knows he faces a fight to earn first-team minutes, given the quality and consistency shown (most of the time!).

Speaking after the draw with Shrewsbury, he told Kyodo News outlet that he is aware of the areas he needs to improve to nail down a regular spot in the side.

“I need to raise my tactical awareness and show my versatility.

“I started in a role that I’m used to, where I was able to receive the ball in good positions, but in the 2nd half I became less involved. I have to be more aggressive.”

It looks as though Sadio Mane won’t play against West Ham, so the Japanese international may get another chance to impress, be it from the start or off the bench.


More reaction to Klopp

WOLVERHAMPTON, ENGLAND - Thursday, January 23, 2020: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp before the FA Premier League match between Wolverhampton Wanderers FC and Liverpool FC at Molineux Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Unsurprisingly, everybody wants their say on the boss’ decision to not take charge of the fourth-round replay.


Wilson back among the goals

Harry Wilson of Bournemouth during the Premier League match at the King Power Stadium, Leicester. Picture date: 31st August 2019. Picture credit should read: Harry Marshall/Sportimage via PA Images

Back to the football action, there’s positive news on the loan front after a host of youngsters featured over the weekend.

Harry Wilson took the headlines after finding the back of the net for the first time since November, but there was also a senior debut for young goalkeeper Dan Atherton and more game time for the likes of Rhian Brewster and Herbie Kane.

Our complete loan round-up gives you all the lowdown on those who are hoping to make the grade at Anfield in future.


Quickfire LFC news

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS, USA - Monday, July 22, 2019: Liverpool's Rinsola Babajide during a friendly match between Liverpool FC Women and Metropolitan Conference All Stars at Jordan Field at the Harvard Stadium on day seven of the club's pre-season tour of America. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

  • Adrian expressed his disappointment at the Reds letting a two-goal lead slip (TIA)
  • Rinsola Babjide scored four as LFC Women beat Blackburn 8-1 in the Women’s FA Cup (LFC)
  • And FIFA 20 fans can revel in the fact that a whole bunch of Reds are getting a massive upgrade (Echo)


Around the Prem

CARDIFF, WALES - Tuesday, August 12, 2014: Real Madrid's James Rodriguez in action against Sevilla during the UEFA Super Cup at the Cardiff City Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

  • Pep Guardiola was disappointed that the Emptihad Stadium wasn’t full for City’s FA Cup game (BBC Sport)
  • PSV winger Steven Bergwijn, linked with the Reds last year, might be heading to Spurs instead; look forward to him being berated by Jose Mourinho in a few weeks’ time (Mirror)
  • Arsenal and Everton want James Rodriguez on loan from Real Madrid, because apparently he’s now an option for mid-table fodder (AS)
  • And remember when Liverpool were definitely interested in Sander Berge, then Napoli were definitely getting him instead? Sheffield United have just had a bid turned down (Mail)


Laughable rumour outcome of the day

Man United‘s pretend move for Bruno Fernandes seemed to hit the wall over the weekend; now the Times reckon they’re putting another offer in – still well below what Sporting CP said they won’t budge from – and it’s set to be rejected as they are expecting a much bigger bid from another team.

Got to love the way that club is run at the moment.


Tweet of the day

Far and away the best in Europe.


What we’re reading

A great interview with Thomas Hitzlsperger, former Aston Villa midfieler and now Stuttgart chief executive, on the Athletic.


Worth watching tonight

Bournemouth against Arsenal in the FA Cup, 8pm kick-off on BT Sport 1. Let’s see if Arteta ends up fuming over a winter break replay, too…

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