West Brom Fightback Steals Spotlight From Salah

West Brom Fightback Steals Spotlight From Salah
Liverpool’s Egyptian midfielder Mohamed Salah scores their second goal during the football match against West Bromwich Albion at The Hawthorns stadium in West Bromwich, central England, on April 21, 2018. Lindsey PARNABY / AFP

 

Mohamed Salah bagged a record-equalling goal for Liverpool, but a dramatic late equaliser from Salomon Rondon earned West Bromwich Albion a 2-2 draw on Saturday.

Rondon rose impressively in the 89th minute, arriving to nod in Chris Brunt’s free-kick and complete Albion’s recovery from a two-goal deficit at the Hawthorns.

But bottom of the table West Brom still look set for relegation from the Premier League as they are eight points from safety with only three games left.

Liverpool remain third, three points behind second-placed Manchester United.

Jurgen Klopp’s side had seemed firmly in control as Salah equalled Ian Rush’s Liverpool record of scoring in 32 different games in a single season and collected his 31st league goal of the campaign, his 41st overall.

Egypt winger Salah tied the Premier League record of most goals in a 38-game campaign, joining Alan Shearer (1995-96), Cristiano Ronaldo (2007-08) and Luis Suarez (2013-14).

He also equalled Suarez’s Liverpool record for most goals in a Premier League season.

Earlier, it was Danny Ings, a player whose Liverpool career has been blighted by injuries since moving from Burnley, who was the centre of attention with his first goal in 930 days.

Ings was preferred to Roberto Firmino, one of five key personnel rested by Klopp with an eye on Tuesday’s Champions League semi-final first leg with Roma, and the former England international wasted little time in justifying his manager’s faith.

Sadio Mane worked a short corner with James Milner, crossing into the six-yard area where Georginio Wijnaldum had space to control the ball into the path of Ings who drove home convincingly.

It was Ings’ first goal since scoring against Everton in October 2015, shortly after his move to Anfield, and his celebrations indicated the obvious relief felt by a player who has badly injured the cruciate ligaments in both knees in the intervening years.

– Anxious finale –

More importantly, the goal put Liverpool ahead in a game Klopp badly needed to win in his quest to ensure his side finishes the season in the top four to guarantee Champions League football next term.

Klopp has insisted that a top-four finish remains as much a priority as reaching the Champions League final and a run of just one defeat in their last 15 games in all competitions testifies to the German’s intent.

On this occasion, Liverpool seemed to be as good as over the finishing line on 71 minutes when Salah moved five goals clear of Tottenham’s Harry Kane in the race for the Premier League’s Golden Boot award.

Firmino headed on a long punt from Loris Karius with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain taking up the running before playing in Salah who finished clinically by lifting the ball over the keeper from eight yards.

But Klopp was left to face an anxious finale when Albion pulled a goal back on 78 minutes.

Brunt’s corner was headed back across goal by Jay Rodriguez and, after a Craig Dawson shot had been saved, Jake Livermore rammed home the loose ball.

The balancing act, of ensuring his side continues to pick up league points while preparing for their Champions League campaign, has not been an easy one and Klopp’s team selection carried with it a degree of risk.

Not that the early going was too problematic for Liverpool as Salah saw a shot deflected behind off Livermore, Ings headed wide from Milner’s cross and Salah planted a 20-yard free-kick over.

But Albion, fresh from their surprise victory at Manchester United last weekend, grew into the game and Rodriguez came close to converting a James McClean cross before the interval, foreshadowing the late comeback that gave Liverpool a shock before their European adventure.

AFP

Sunderland Confirm Anichebe Out For Ten Weeks With Knee Injury

sunderlandNigerian forward, Victor Anichebe, has been ruled out of action for three months after sustaining a knee injury in Sunderland’s 2-0 defeat to West Bromwich Albion at the weekend.

Anichebe, who just returned from a hamstring injury, was brought on as a second half substitute but later went down clutching his right knee.

Sunderland manager, David Moyes, confirmed that the 28-year-old will be out until April.

Anichebe’s latest injury will be a big blow to the Black Cats who already have Lee Cattermole, Jan Kirchhoff, Paddy Mcnair, Jordan Pickford and Duncan Watmore all out with long-term injuries.

Rodgers Pleased With New Signings

RodgersLiverpool Manager, Brendan Rodgers is optimistic that the new players signed by the club will help the team compete for major titles this season despite the record sale of Raheem Sterling.

The club have already signed Adam Lallana and are on the verge of adding Aston Villa top hit man Christian Benteke to their line up.

Rodgers believes Sterling’s move will not affect the team and described the 20-year-old as a talented footballer.

Aston villa striker Christian Benteke has been strongly linked with a move to Liverpool, who now have money in their pocket following the sale of Sterling to Manchester City in a deal worth up to 49 million pounds.

The Reds are closing in on Benteke who has a 32.5 million pound buyout clause in his contract.

However Aston Villa manager, Tim Sherwood reiterated the club’s stance that he would not be leaving unless the clause was activated.

Rodgers Hails Gerrard’s Recovery After Penalty Miss

Gerrard
Steven Gerrard celebrates his winning goal during Liverpool’s English Premier League match against QPR at Anfield on May 2, 2015.

Liverpool Manager, Brendan Rodgers, has hailed the determination and quality of Steven Gerrard after the Liverpool captain recovered from a penalty miss to earn his team a 2-1 win against Queens Park Rangers.

The Reds created a host of chances at Anfield and took a lead during the first half when Rickie Lambert expertly teed up Philippe Coutinho to send a curler beyond Robert Green.

But Leroy Fer levelled for the Londoners on 73 minutes and Gerrard was thwarted from 12 yards by a reflex save from the QPR goalkeeper in front of a stunned Kop.

But those same supporters were on their feet in the final moments as the No.8 leapt to meet Coutinho’s corner and glance a header home, securing all three points.

“It’s world-class talent,” said Rodgers to media after the match.

“There’s a very, very small group of players in that bracket, where in the big games they score the big goals and make the big contributions.

“He’s done that, everyone has seen that throughout his entire career at Liverpool.

“He missed the penalty and sometimes you think it may go against us, but there is no-one more determined to score and make up for it than Steven. It was a very, very good header.

“He was very determined, especially after the penalty. You sometimes find with a lot of players that when they miss a big penalty like that, normally their game goes and their confidence goes.

“But he’s the total opposite. He’s one of a unique group of players that whenever they need to respond, they normally do. It was an outstanding header and obviously gets us the win.”

Gerrard left the field to a standing ovation in the closing seconds, marking his penultimate Anfield appearance before he bids farewell to the club at the end of the season.

The personal joy he took from the winner was clear, as was the appreciation from every corner of the stadium, with the time to say emotional goodbyes moving ever closer.

Rodgers continued: “His career is probably all flashing before his eyes now.

“It was brilliant to get it at the Kop end as well – it was a really special moment for him. It all goes very quickly, but you can see he is still contributing at this level.

“There was no-one better, especially when he missed the penalty. I knew that if you keep him on, you’ve got every chance of getting a goal. He always steps up to the plate.”

The victory halted a disappointing run for the Reds.

In the two league matches since enduring the heartbreak of defeat at Wembley against Aston Villa, Rodgers’ side drew against West Bromwich Albion before losing out against Hull City at the KC Stadium earlier this week.

Rodgers concluded his press conference with a message of support for Rio Ferdinand and his family after the QPR defender confirmed the tragic news of the passing of his wife, Rebecca.

He said: “I’d just like to say one thing on behalf of us all here for Rio Ferdinand and his family. I think football was secondary today, with all due respect.

“This is a guy who has been an incredible player and today, when I was coming to the training ground, I heard the news about his wife.

“So on behalf of us here at Liverpool Football Club – the players, fans and the people of the city – we pass on our condolences and respect to him and his family.”

 

Culled from http://www.liverpoolfc.com

Coach Stephen Keshi,Osaze to end rift

Super Eagles forward Osaze Odemwingie will be flying into Abuja to meet with Super Eagles Coach Stephen Keshi, for the two to sit and resolve the issues causing friction between them.

Thanks to Aminu Maigari the Nigeria Football Federation President (NFF) for his intervention and after several telephone calls between Maigari and the parties, is intervention yielded some positive results prompting the West Bromwich forward to agree to a reconciliation meeting.

The reconciliation process however will involve not only Coach Keshi, Osaze and  Aminu Maigari but the ‘who is who’ in the football federation.

It would be recalled that the West Bromwich player who moved to from Lokomotiv Moscow has not laced his boot for National colours since the former Super Eagles Captain under Clemence Westerhof took over as the coach of the Super Eagles for almost a year now.

Issues between the two is not yet known but Coach Stephen Keshi’s claim was that Osaze refuses to return calls even after getting to see missed calls, he said this during the preparation for the qualifiers against Liberia last month, a likely reason for Osaze’s long exclusion from the Super Eagles build-up. Initially, the West Bromwich striker was ruled out due to injury.

Roy Hodgson confirmed as England manager

The Football Association of England has confirmed Roy Hodgson as the new manager responsible for the English national team a in 4 year deal which will end after the conclusion of Euro 2016.

It was agreed that he will not be leaving West Brom his present club just yet but until the club plays its last two games to end the English Premier League as the management of West brom and the English FA agreed to conclude Hodgson’s deal.

The English FA earlier in the day a statement was released confirming the new deal with the 64-year old today at 4pm.

Roy Hodgson took Switzerland to the FIFA World Cup in 1994 – their first Finals competition for 28 years and he also achieved a FIFA ranking of third in the world as well as successfully qualifying the Switzerland for Euro 96.”

West Brom has been left in a limbo now and serious search for a replacement of their former coach as the club management expressed disappointment despite agreeing with the coach to leave the club. However club Chairman (West Brom), Jeremy Peace says the management would have liked him to sign a new contract with club and talks were already in process.

May 13th which will mark West Bromwich’s last game for the season will also mark the departure of Roy Hodgson as the head coach of West Bromwich Albion.

Background

Roy Hodgson was born 9 August 1947.

He has managed sixteen different teams in eight countries one of which was the Switzerland national team that he guided to the last 16 of the 1994 World Cup and qualification for Euro 1996; Switzerland had not qualified for a major tournament since the 1960s.

From 2006 to 2007, he managed the Finland national team, guiding them to their highest ever FIFA ranking of 33rd place, and coming close to qualifying for a major tournament for the first time in their history.

He has been the beaten finalist in the UEFA Cup, with Inter Milan in 1997 and the UEFA Europa League with Fulham FC in 2010.

Hodgson has also coached many notable club sides including, Blackburn Rovers, Grasshoppers, FC Copenhagen, Udinese and Liverpool.

He has served several times as a member of UEFA’s technical study group at the European Championships, and was also a member of the FIFA technical study group at the 2006 World Cup.

Hodgson speaks five languages and has worked as a television pundit in several of the countries in which he has coached.