No shame in second for Liverpool

Liverpool second Premier League Klopp Van Dijk Robertson Salah Mane

Bill Shankly famously said that finishing second is nothing. Even he, though, would have been tempted to revise that statement when discussing this current Liverpool team. Describing this team as failures would be cruel in the extreme.

While the overarching desire is to look back at this past season and mourn the death of another potential title win, the reaction should be the opposite. Liverpool should be celebrating a glorious campaign and the fact that it happened in the first place. Jurgen Klopp’s side have impressed beyond belief over the past year. Suggestions that they have done anything but succeed this season are not worth listening to. Klopp will certainly be sharing that message among his group.  Continue reading

This weekend’s predicted lineups for all EPL games

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With just a couple of weeks left in this Premier League season, it’s time for you to start making that final fantasy EPL push up the table.

Here are our predicted lineups for those EPL fixtures so have a read in preparation for another EPL fantasy football round.

Liverpool v Huddersfield Town

Liverpool XI: Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Van Dijk, Robertson, Wijnaldum, Henderson, Keita, Salah, Firmino, Mane

Huddersfield XI: Lossl, Smith, Schindler, Kongolo, Durm, Hadergjonaj, Mooy, Stankovic, Bacuna, Lowe, Mounie Continue reading

Predicted lineups for this weekend’s EPL action

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Starting on Friday night, the English Premier League has a full schedule of games over this coming weekend.

Here are our predicted lineups for those EPL fixtures so have a read in preparation for another EPL fantasy football round.

Leicester City v Newcastle United

Leicester XI: Schmeichel, Pereira, Morgan, Maguire, Chilwell, Tielemans, Ndidi, Maddison, Gray, Vardy, Barnes

Newcastle XI: Dubravka, Yedlin, Schar, Lascelles, Dummett, Ritchie, Perez, Hayden, Ki, Almiron, Rondon Continue reading

Digne and Robertson battling for Premier League dominance

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It’s rare that two of the Premier League’s best players in a single position can be found playing on opposite halves of the same city. Yet, for Merseyside that is the case this season. Everton’s Lucas Digne and Liverpool’s Andy Robertson are both staking a claim to be the best left-backs in the division.

On the blue half of the city, there is Digne. The Frenchman arrived from Barcelona in the summer as a long-term replacement for Leighton Baines. That was an unenviable task given the status Baines had built for himself over 11 years at the club. It’s one Digne has completed in just under a year. If you need an example of how good he is, just head to statistics website WhoScored. Continue reading

Andy Robertson key to Liverpool’s Champions League hopes

Over the past year, Liverpool have spent £150 million in the transfer market. £37.8 million of that went on Mohamed Salah last summer, luring the Egyptian winger from Roma. £34.2 million was wired to Arsenal for the signing of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, with £71 million paid to Southampton for Virgil Van Dijk in January. Not much attention was paid to the £8 million spent on Andy Robertson.

The Scottish left back arrived at Anfield without much fanfare. He had impressed in the Premier League for Hull City the season before, but Robertson wasn’t a marquee signing. Most agreed that he was a shrewd signing, but he wasn’t categorised in the same way the signing of Salah was, and the signing of Van Dijk following that.

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Since then, Robertson has become a key figure for Jurgen Klopp’s side. The Scot had to earn his place, with Alberto Moreno picked ahead of him for the early part of the season. Now, it’s difficult to envisage how Liverpool could possibly have overlooked Robertson at left back.

Robertson is in the form of his life. Many consider him to currently be the best left back in the Premier League, and at £8 million his signing last summer undoubtedly goes down as the bargain of the 2017/18 season. Now, he would cost about five times, at least, that. Liverpool played the market and won.

While Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino have grabbed the headlines this season, and rightly so, they wouldn’t have reached such heights over the past few months without Robertson proving them with a supply line down the left side. The Scot has given Liverpool another attacking outlet. Sometimes, he is the fourth member of their attacking line, such is his natural attacking ambition.

In his first season at Liverpool, Robertson has sparked up a relationship with Firmino and Salah in particular. The 24-year-old has made a habit of bursting down the left wing and crossing for the back post, where he invariably finds the run of a teammate in red. It’s now muscle memory for the former Dundee United and Queen’s Park player.

Crossing might be the biggest strength of Robertson’s game. His deliveries are consistently wicked, more often than not pinpointed to find the run of a teammate. The Scot has gone a long way to solve some of the defensive issues Liverpool endured earlier in the season, but he has also become an integral component of their attack.

In many ways, Robertson embodies all that is good about Klopp’s team. In years gone by Liverpool faced criticism for their scouting, but the system worked in the identification of Robertson as a target. Robertson is young and dynamic and has grown as a player since making the move to Merseyside. He sets a precedent for others to follow. If Liverpool go on to win this season’s Champions League, Robertson will have been a key part of that success.

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