Thursday, August 02, 2007

Leto Cleared For LiverpooL Debut

Liverpool starlet Sebastian Leto has finally been given the all-clear to make his debut for the Premiership club.

The Argentinian left winger has been granted a European passport and is now set to play in this weekend's Port of Rotterdam tournament.

The 20-year-old was blocked from travelling to Hong Kong for last week's Asia Trophy tournament because of a delay in paperwork.

But Leto, a £2million signing from Lanus at the end of last season, will be included in boss Rafael Benitez's squad when Liverpool fly to Holland tomorrow morning.

Liverpool play Shanghai Shenua tomorrow evening and Feyenoord on Sunday as they round off their pre-season programme.

Benitez said: "He (Leto) will be able to play in Holland. Leto will travel with the squad and we have permission to play him in these games.

"It's good news for him because it's not easy when you're only training. You want to play in the games."

Kuyt Says Liverpool Will Score

Liverpool striker Dirk Kuyt insists that Liverpool’s problems in front of goal will not persist as the team prepare for the new season.

The Reds have spent some serious money in the transfer window, mostly on players who can get the ball into the back of the net.

Last season Liverpool were accused of not creating enough scoring chances in the Premiership, and when they did, spurning them with poor finishing.

Rafa Benitez has been active in the market trying to solve the problem, bringing in Fernando Torres, Ryan Babel and Andriy Voronin.

But a 0-0 draw in normal time against Portsmouth in the final of the Asia Trophy last weekend was a worrying sign that the money has been wasted. Liverpool lost the game on penalties, new boy Torres missing his spot kick.

But it is too soon before the start of the Premiership season to get hot under the collar according to Dirk Kuyt who faces his old club Feyenoord on Sunday in Liverpool’s final pre-season match.

“I feel we showed some quality and created lots of chances against Portsmouth,” said the 27-year-old.

“The only disappointing thing is we did not score any of them. That’s what we must work on. But we will and hopefully it will come.

“You could see both Torres and Babel have plenty of quality and skill. The pair of them are very fast and both have great futures here at Liverpool.”

Sochaux Planning Le Tallec Bid

Liverpool misfit Anthony Le Tallec could be heading back to France on a permanent basis after it was made clear he has no future at Anfield.

The 22-year-old midfielder spent last season on loan to Sochaux, and the French club have now confirmed that they are considering meeting Reds manager Rafael Benitez's £2.7million asking price.

Le Tallec returned to Liverpool's Melwood training ground this summer hoping to rekindle his Anfield career.

But Benitez promptly sent him to train with the reserves and it is believed he has been given a week off.

He did not travel with the second string to Holland yesterday for the four-team tournament next weekend in Amsterdam.

Benitez could have allowed Le Tallec to train with the senior squad this week ahead of their own trip to play two games in Rotterdam at the weekend, but instead opted to give the player time off.

Liverpool have offered Le Tallec to clubs in the UK and Europe, and he has been linked with Birmingham, Fulham and West Ham.

But Sochaux could be prepared to end the player's Mersey nightmare by coming up with a permanent deal.

Sochaux chairman Jean-Claude Plessis, who earlier in the summer claimed his club would not pursue the player, said: "Indeed we are thinking about a permanent deal.

"Anthony is a very talented player who has been very fair with us last season. If the conditions are acceptable, why not sign him?"

After being signed by former boss Gerard Houllier from Le Havre - along with Florent Sinama-Pongolle - in 2002, in a joint deal which was worth up to £7m, Le Tallec also had an unsatisfactory loan spell at Sunderland.

But the French Under-21 international has never fulfilled the promise he showed as a teenager, which earned him high praise in a series of UEFA and FIFA youth championships.