Liverpool face Crystal Palace at the weekend and the final news of the week focuses on that fixture and the latest rumours in the media.
Wolves still on the prowl for Divock
Divock Origi has hardly featured for the Reds this season and certainly hasn’t impressed when handed the chance.
Considering the impact on the first team by inexperienced youngsters such as Rhys Williams and Curtis Jones, and how reliable they have proven to be, it’s a bit of a damning indictment on the Belgian that he offers so little in terms of energy and effectiveness, let alone goals.
Wolves have long been linked with him and with Raul Jimenez suffering a terrible skull injury, the Athletic say they remain keen on him, with one change: Liverpool are now open to a sale.
A £20million fee is still thought to be the rough price tag which would secure his services, with Origi now at best sixth-choice forward after the usual trio, Diogo Jota and Takumi Minamino – though the latter has also been used in midfield.
Thiago ready to return and restart Reds adventure
Our brilliant Spanish midfielder has had a small impact on the team so far, yet a big one at the same time: hardly any minutes on the pitch, but an obvious injection of quality for the brief occasions we’ve seen him involved.
He, as much as the fans, can’t wait for the moment he steps back on the pitch – and he has explained how he’s looking to rejoin full team training before the end of the month.
The club will take it nice and slow with his recovery, but that should just about put him ahead of schedule for the vague expected return dates we’ve been offered until now.
And while Thiago was among four Reds named in the FIFA Team of the Year – Alisson, Trent and Van Dijk are in there too – he said he’s only looking forward as to what he can achieve now with the Reds, rather than enjoy what he did with Bayern.
Progressing on to Palace
Three more points to keep us top would make for a lovely Christmas for all Reds everywhere! Standing in our way: former boss Roy Hodgson.
- We’ve got a full match preview with form guide, team news and more
- Here are the best stats ahead of the match and Klopp’s press conference in full
- And on the injury front, Shaqiri and Milner could join Thiago in team training next week as they all hit the comeback trail
Quickfire LFC news
- Markus Babbel says the club wouldn’t be the force it is now if not for Houllier’s interventions (TIA)
- Klopp has explained his exasperation with 10 PL clubs voting against the five subs rule yet again (Goal)
- Inter Milan and Barcelona are in a tug-of-war over Gini’s services in the new year (SW)
- And Liverpool have also made enquiries about Bayer Munich’s Jamal Musiala, say reports from Germany (SportBILD)
Around the Prem
- Roy Hodgson is hoping to spoil Klopp’s party after being named The Best FIFA men’s coach again (TIA)
- Solskjaer is crying that Liverpool have an advantage over United by having 2,000 fans in the ground. Which is maybe true, but also kind of glosses over the astronomically bigger fact that we have an advantage because we have Klopp, the finest on the planet, and United have him, the finest out of only those who have coached both Molde and Cardiff (Mail)
- Big Sam is getting to work in familiar fashion at West Brom: by prioritising defensive signings. He wants a new James Tomkins for Christmas (Mail)
- And Napoli want £14m for Arek Milik in January, who they put themselves in a strong bargaining position with by, erm, leaving him off their squad list for this season (Goal)
Stupid sacking of the day
Schalke have binned off Manuel Baum after 79 days and no wins.
Alternatively, you could look at this as Schalke sack their manager despite the club as a whole picking up no wins in 28 games – since 17 January, 2020. Probably not that third manager of the year’s fault, then, but sure, continue running the club the same way!
Still more points than Chris Wilder’s Sheffield United, mind.
Tweet of the day
Trent Alexander-Arnold is the first English player to make the FIFPro Men's World XI since Wayne Rooney in 2011.
He's the first English defender since John Terry in 2009 to make the XI. pic.twitter.com/pP7fqLcNzg
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) December 17, 2020
What we’re reading
A nice big interview with Rhys Williams.
Worth watching tonight
Union Berlin vs Borussia Dortmund. Taiwo Awoniyi vs Emre Can. Loris Karius on one bench and ‘the new Klopp’ on the other! 7:30pm, BT Sport 1.