Thursday, April 14, 2011

John Barnes Hails Kenny Dalglish Impact At Liverpool FC

John Barnes has hailed the impact Kenny Dalglish has made since he returned to the Anfield hot-seat, saying: “It is a match made in heaven.”

Barnes played under Dalglish during his first stint as Reds manager and hasn’t been surprised by the upturn in the club’s fortunes.

And he believes with some quality additions this summer, Liverpool will be capable of mounting a title challenge next season.

Barnes said: “It is a match made in heaven. It is a perfect fit – Kenny and Liverpool.

“He is the only one who could have galvanized the fans to bring everyone back together.

“They made two great signings in (Andy) Carroll and (Luis) Suarez but they need more investment.”

Barnes, who was sacked as Tranmere boss in October 2009, is determined to get back into management.

“The long-term aim is to get back into football,” he said.

“If I get a job here in football, it will be in League One, League Two or other lower division clubs. I have worked in Jamaica before, so I would be willing to look anywhere in the world.”

Liverpool Make £8m Plus Joe Cole Transfer Bid For Aston Villa Ace

Liverpool is ready to offer Joe Cole plus £8m in a swap deal for Aston Villa winger Ashley Young.

The 25-year-old has reportedly told friends he will leave Villa in order to develop his international career further and looks set to engineer a move from the club at the end of the season.

Liverpool, Manchester United and Tottenham are reported suitors of the winger but the Anfield club could emerge as favourites to land Young with an alluring swap deal involving midfielder Joe Cole plus a cash offer.

Reds boss Kenny Dalglish is keen to offload the 29-year-old who has endured a torturous time since his summer move to Anfield, struggling for form and fitness, and it now seems the Scot is ready to cut his losses with the former Chelsea player.

Liverpool have reportedly signed French winger Sylvain Marveaux for next season and the club are eyeing one more orthodox wide man to provide service for new strikers Andy Carroll and Luis Suarez.

Dalglish Makes ‘Mad Dash’ For Germany Star

Danish newspaper Jyllands Posten is claiming that Kenny Dalglish and Damien Comolli are planning to make a mad dash for Germany to personally secure the signature of Wolfsburg star Simon Kjaer.

Dalglish reportedly sees Kjaer as perfect for the center half position at Liverpool.

The defender has been rated one of the top on his kind in the Bundesliga, but with Wolfsburg currently struggling and sitting third last on the table and facing relegation, speculation is growing that the Danish international is set to make an exit.

The 22 year old was linked with Liverpool last year while he was playing for Serie A side Palermo, but Kjaer signed with Wolfsburg instead.

Now that Wolfsburg are reportedly looking to cash in on the youngster, Liverpool are back in the hot seat to work out a deal, and both the Liverpool manager and football director are wasting no time in securing the star’s signature.

Liverpool Want Birmingham City's Sebastian Larsson

Liverpool's search for summer reinforcements has led them to Birmingham City winger Sebastian Larsson, it has been claimed.

According to the Express & Star, the Swede will leave St Andrew's at the end of the season when his contract expires, and the Reds are ready to pounce for the 25-year-old.

Reports allege that Liverpool have made their interest known in Larsson and are keen to bring him to Anfield when the transfer window reopens as they attempt to bolster their attacking options.

Larsson began his career with Arsenal but, after failing to make his way into Arsene Wenger's first team, joined Birmingham in 2007 after an initial loan spell at the club.

However, the Sweden international has been frequently been linked with a move away from Birmingham after stalling over contract negotiations - and it would appear Liverpool are one of the frontrunners for his signature. has previously reported that Liverpool are interested in the versatile midfielder, while the Anfield club are known to be after more potent wide options.

Liverpool are already said to have tied up the signing of Rennes flyer Sylvain Marveaux in their pursuit of new recruits.

Liverpool Manager In Sensational Swoop For Former Anfield Hero Michael Owen

Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish is lining up a sensational swoop for the former Kop idol Michael Owen this summer.

The Manchester United striker is out of contract at the end of the season and is unlikely to be offered a new deal by Sir Alex Ferguson.

The 31-year-old has been struggling with injuries since he left Liverpool in 2004, despite playing for the Red Devils, Real Madrid and Newcastle United.

Dalglish is prepared to gamble on the England international and sees Owen as ideal back up to Andy Carroll and Luis Suarez.

Being a free agent, Dalglish is prepared to offer him a chance to rebuild bridges with Liverpool fans following his departure from Anfield and his decision to join the Red Devils.

It is understood Owen still has a lot of admirers from within the Liverpool dressing room, notably Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher.

Owen has been linked with a move to Aston Villa to work under Gerard Houllier, but the Villa manager’s uncertainty over his own future has left the deal in doubt.

It is unclear whether the Kop fans would welcome the return of Owen, as they have constantly heckled their former hero at every opportunity.

Kenny Targets PSG Star If Cahill Bid Fails

Liverpool will turn to France's next major star Mamadou Sakho if their campaign to land Gary Cahill ends in failure.

Anfield boss Kenny Dalglish has earmarked the Bolton and England centre half as a major priority when he is given funds in the summer.

But the Reds manager is painfully aware that Wanderers are determined to hold out until the bidding reaches £20million.

And with moneybags Manchester City also in the race, Dalglish has wisely lined up a back-up, with 21-year-old Sakho his preferred choice.

The Paris St Germain defender has already made a massive impact in France after winning his first full cap in the recent victory over England.

Sakho is doubly attractive because he can also play left back as well as centre half, and would cost only half the fee Cahill is likely to command.

Dalglish has other targets, with Aston Villa's Ashley Young, Charlie Adam of Blackpool and Ipswich wonderboy Connor Wickham, who only turned 18 last week, on his list.

The Liverpool boss wants to concentrate on exciting young stars, after presiding over a massive improvement in the youth structure at Anfield since he returned to the club 18 months ago.

King Kenny gave teenager John Flanagan his debut against City on Monday night, and wasn't disappointed as the defender turned in an immaculate performance.

And his display was further proof of the giant strides made with young players coming through the ranks in the past 12 months.

Dalglish originally returned to the club as an ambassador with special responsibility for academy recruitment, and he has maintained that interest by promoting several kids into his first team squad.

Liverpool has seriously failed to develop young, local talent in the past decade, since Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher burst onto the scene at the end of the 1990s.

Yet this season Jay Spearing and Martin Kelly have already established themselves, along with Jonjo Shelvey and now Flanagan knocking at the door.

Other exciting young stars such as Conor Coady, Jack Robinson, Andre Wisdom, Raheem Sterling and 16 year old goalscoring sensation Adam Morgan all seem to have a big future at Anfield, and Dalglish wants to ensure that happens by continuing to identify the best young talent.

Flanagan showed enough in 90 minutes against England winger James Milner to suggest he can make the grade, and previous academy graduate Carragher believes it is a massive boost for the future of the club.

"I'm delighted for John and I think it gives the whole club a lift when you see a local lad come through - the supporters love it," he said.

"I think at the Academy it gives all of them a lift. The young lads at the Academy, it shows them it can be done.

"There's a bit of competition now between him and Kelly for the local lads. It's great for everyone really that you've got two local lads like that coming through.

"To be honest there's a few more down there so it's up to them lads to take their chance. Flanno's done that, but I'm pretty confident that there are more down there."

Pardew Denies Rumours Linking Enrique With Liverpool Move

Newcastle manager Alan Pardew has insisted there is no deal in place to sell Spanish full-back Jose Enrique to Liverpool. Speculation has been rife in recent months that the former Villarreal full-back will leave Tyneside during the summer after putting talks over a new contract on hold.

Former Liverpool player and assistant manager Phil Thompson said in a television interview over the weekend he understood a deal had been done, a claim on which Newcastle were not prepared to comment.

However, Pardew, who has repeatedly spoken of his hopes of persuading the club's first-choice left-back to extend his stay at St James' Park, is adamant that is not the case.

He said: "There's definitely no deal between the clubs – 100 per cent. He's under contract here until next summer and we hope to open talks on a new deal as soon as possible. That's where we are.

"We want to keep our best players, and Jose's one of them. As far as anything being a done deal, that's not true. We want Jose to stay. Nothing's changed."

Pardew's comments are likely to do little to placate fans concerned that one of the club's most consistent players could be heading for the exit doors.

Striker Andy Carroll was ultimately prised out of the manager's grasp by Liverpool's £35million January bid after repeated assurances he was going nowhere. Indeed, Carroll had signed a new long-term contract just months earlier.

Newcastle had hoped both Enrique and midfielder Joey Barton would sign new contracts at the turn of the year, but the defender, having been linked with the likes of Bayern Munich and Milan, decided to wait until after the club's Premier League status was assured.

Barton also decided not to commit himself in the wake of Carroll's departure, preferring instead to wait for the club to persuade him of their ambition by tying up the likes of Enrique and skipper Kevin Nolan as well as targeting new signings during the summer.

The Spaniard endured a tough first couple of season on Tyneside after making a £6.3m switch from La Liga in August 2007.

However, he has developed into a genuine Premier League player and it is no surprise he has attracted the interest of prospective purchasers. The word in the north-east has been for some time that his future lies away from St James, and his retention or otherwise will represent a major test of how owner Mike Ashley's blueprint for the future is viewed within the dressing room.

'Academy Is One Of Europe's Best'

Former Liverpool left-back Stig Inge Bjornebye has hailed the club's Academy as one of the finest in Europe.

The Norwegian has been a frequent visitor to the Reds' youth-base in recent years and has been hugely impressed by the work being carried out by Academy director Frank McParland.

Speaking at a specially arranged U13 clash that saw his amateur side Heming takes on Liverpool, Bjornebye revealed his deep gratitude to the Kirkby staff for their hospitality.

"This is an outstanding complex," he told

"It's got to be one of the best around when you look at the staff and facilities available.

"I've always kept in touch with the club and have often visited to look around and get advice on coaching.

"We actually did a TV show for a Norwegian channel when I came here last year and I have to say Frank McParland and his staff were fantastic.

"We spoke then about the possibility of bringing my son Tobias's team, Heming over for some training sessions and a friendly match. I coach them but we are only an amateur team from Oslo, so for Liverpool to treat us so well is great.

"I feel very honoured to be here and to have been looked after the way we have by everyone.

"When you look around at the players at the various age groups you can see there is some great talent here. It really does look good for Liverpool's future."