Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Clarke Rubbishes Claims That Shane Long May Join Liverpool

West Brom manager Steve Clarke has dismissed suggestions that his forward Shane Long could leave the club for Liverpool in the January transfer window.

Despite suffering back-to-back defeats in the past week to Stoke City and Swansea, the Baggies have been in excellent form this season, still sitting in fifth position in the Premier League.

Republic of Ireland international Long has done his part in West Brom’s rise up the league, hitting seven goals in 16 appearances, leading to speculation that a move to Liverpool may beckon.

Clarke has adamantly denied any truth to such stories, underlining the club’s intention to hold onto one of their prized assets.

"Liverpool need a striker, Shane is playing well, so a lazy journalist puts it together and makes a story out of it," Clarke is quoted as saying in the Birmingham Mail. "Shane is not for sale. And I'd be very surprised if Brendan Rodgers wanted to take Shane anyway.

"People are merely looking at connections and making stories out of it."

Liverpool have been bereft of striking options other than Luis Suarez for most of the first half of the season, leading to the club being linked with a number of forwards in the build up to the January transfer window.

Brendan Rodgers side may have to take on West Ham United with no recognized striker in their ranks this Sunday, with the Uruguay international missing through suspension.

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