Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Rodgers Wants Spanish Flair

Brendan Rodgers says he is planning to use the Spanish tactics that have taken the world by storm in recent years as a blueprint for future success at Liverpool.

The 39-year-old manager won many admirers for the way he built on the foundations of the current Wigan boss Roberto Martinez at Swansea that had the club likened to the reigning world and European champions.

He was brought in to replace Kenny Dalglish as Liverpool boss after a poor season in which they finished in a disappointing eighth place.

And Rodgers has vowed to bring the good times back to Anfield with his brand of possession football.

"Any football team, especially when you play possession football, has to limit the opposition to few chances," he told talkSPORT.

"Last year we (Swansea) used to defend with the ball and people in this country don't seem to understand that, they think you defend without the ball.

"But it is all about penetration and that is what I will look to bring here. Possession is no good on its own, it has to be with penetration."

The mixed performances last season may have cost the Kop favourite his job but Rodgers was quick to defend the record of Dalglish in his second spell in charge of the club.

Rodgers believes he laid strong foundations for future success at the club and because of that he is does not need to raid the transfer market if he is to challenge for silverware in his first season in charge of the famous old club.

"If you look at Liverpool's record last season Kenny was very unlucky because there were so many games they dominated but just failed to hit the back of the net," he added.

"Defensively they were reasonably strong so it is a case of improving on what has been happening over the last couple of years and giving the players confidence to go and win games."

Liverpool Show An Interest As Kalou Becomes Free Agent

Liverpool are believed to be interested in securing the services of Salomon Kalou after the attacker became a free agent on July 1.

Chelsea did not offer the forward a new contract and he was eventually allowed to leave the club as he looks for a new challenge after six successful years with the west London club.

Kalou won the Premier League, four FA Cups, the League Cup and the Champions League during his time at Stamford Bridge and he certainly brings a wealth of experience at the highest level.

ESPN is reporting that Liverpool is one of several clubs that are hoping to persuade Kalou to join them. One problem for the Reds is that they will not be able to offer Champions League football, something that the Senegal international has grown accustomed to.

The 26-year-old previously played in Holland where he spent three years with Feyenoord, but much will now depend on whether he wants to test himself in another league, or if he would prefer to stay in England.

Liverpool are certainly looking to add some attacking options after their own former Feyenoord forward Dirk Kuyt left the club.

Reds boss Brendan Rodgers will have to hope that he can convince Kalou that he can take the club forward after a disappointing league campaign under Kenny Dalglish as Liverpool finished in eighth place.

Liverpool Have Until Late July To Sign Newcastle Forward

Newcastle United fans will be hoping that the month of July goes by quicker than normal as the end of the month marks the cut-off date in Demba Ba's release clause that could see him leave for just £7million.

The Senegal international was one of the form striker of last season, despite struggling after returning from the Africa Cup of Nations when he was asked to play in wide positions.

The arrival of Papiss Cisse saw Ba lose his central role but he still ended the season with an impressive return of 16 league goals.

There is concern on Tyneside that a club will make an offer and, according to the Daily Mirror, Liverpool could be one of the sides that decides to make an offer for the forward.

Brendan Rodgers is working had behind the scenes to try and identify targets and the paper believes that Ba could be one man that the new Liverpool boss attempts to bring to Anfield.

Liverpool certainly struggled in front of goal last season with Luis Suarez the only man to reach double figures as he ended the season with 11 league goals.

Should the Reds decide to move for Ba then they would have to bid £7million by July 31, as after that date, Newcastle could demand considerably more and would be under no pressure to sell.

Liverpool Want Bolton Midfielder

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has turned his attention to Bolton midfielder Mark Davies after seemingly missing out on Gylfi Sigurdsson who is on the verge of joining Tottenham.

Rodgers had hoped to be able to persuade Sigurdsson to choose a move to Anfield after enjoying a good relationship with the midfielder when they were together at Swansea.

However, it seems as though the Hoffenheim midfielder is now on the verge of completing a move to White Hart Lane after the German side accepted an offer from Tottenham.

The Daily Mirror has reported that Liverpool are prepared to offer as much as £6million for the midfielder who would be playing in the Championship is he decided to remain at Bolton Wanderers.

Davies, 24, was one of the stand out performers in a Bolton side that struggled throughout the season as he scored four goals and provided plenty of energy in the heart of midfield.

Liverpool particularly struggled in midfield last season as Jordan Henderson, Charlie Adam and Jay Spearing all received criticism for their performances.

Rodgers is keen to freshen up his squad after the Reds suffered a disappointing league campaign and made the decision to part company with Kenny Dalglish.

Napoli Plot Swoop For Liverpool Star

Napoli have set their sights on Liverpool defender Martin Skrtel.

The Slovakia international has been linked with Premier League champions Manchester City during the close season, and before that it was Russian big-spenders Anzhi Makhachkala.

He insists he wants to stay at Anfield under new manager Brendan Rodgers, but Napoli are hoping to take advantage of the uncertainty surrounding his future by making a move for the 27-year-old centre-back.

According to a report in Italian newspaper Tuttosport, the Serie A are hoping their Slovakian playmaker Marek Hamsik can persuade his international team-mate to join him at the club.

Andy Carroll Targeted By AC Milan's Transfer Guru

Liverpool striker Andy Carroll has been identified as a transfer target by the son of AC Milan owner Silvio Berlusconi, who has urged his father to pull off the shock signing of the summer.

Italian media mogul Pier Silvio Berlusconi, who is the president of Mediaset, the holding company that owns AC Milan, has acted as a consultant on the Rossoneri's transfer business in recent years, as the club seek to replace their ageing stars with a new wave of young talent.

Milan have continued their squad overhaul this summer with the likes of Filippo Inzaghi, 38, Clarence Seedorf, 36, Mark van Bommel, 35, and Gennaro Gattuso, 34, all leaving the San Siro on free transfers.

However, while a selection of legendary stars have already left, Milan are yet to splash the cash on any big name replacements, instead favouring the likes of Riccardo Montolivo and Bakaye Traore, who have both arrived on free transfers.

Yet Berlusconi Jr. believes Milan should get the cheque book out this summer, and start with a deal for Liverpool's £35 million powerhouse Carroll, who impressed for England at Euro 2012.

'This is a new era for Milan. We will continue to get younger while maintaining the culture.

Milan still has its superstars. As a future target I'd like Andy Carroll,' Pier Silvio Berlusconi announced.

'I must admit that for his body build, and after seeing his header in the Euros, I would like to have ‪Carroll‬ at ‪Milan‬.'

The news is unlikely to win favour with many Milan fans, with Carroll's infamous, powerful, aggressive approach a far cry from the technical, stylish football the club love to play.

Juventus Remain In Hunt For Suarez

Juventus are preparing to test Liverpool’s resolve with a bid for Luis Suarez.

The Italian champions are looking to bolster their forward line and have looked at Arsenal’s Robin van Persie and Edin Dzeko of Manchester City.

But Juventus have held a long-standing interest in Suarez, who has been in discussion with Liverpool over extending his current contract.

However, Suarez – like defender Martin Skrtel, who is wanted by Manchester City and Russian side Anzi Makhachakla and Daniel Agger – is yet to sign a new deal.

It has been mooted in Italy that Juventus could try to prise the Uruguayan away by offering a player plus cash.

Liverpool’s owners Fenway Sports Group, though, have absolutely no intention of selling Suarez.

Rodgers Wants Suarez Deal

Brendan Rodgers hopes to secure a new contract for Luis Suarez after the Liverpool striker was again linked with a move to Juventus.

Suarez joined Liverpool from Ajax in 2011 and his impressive performances during his time at Anfield have seen the Uruguay international regularly linked with other major European clubs.

The 25-year-old brushed off reports at the end of last season that he could join Barcelona or Real Madrid, while Juventus have been long-term admirers of Suarez.

The latest reports have claimed that the Serie A champions are ready to test the Reds' resolve to hang on to Suarez by making a bid for the forward.

However, Rodgers does not want to lose Suarez after talking to the player and is hopeful that a new contract can be agreed.

"I've had a brilliant chat with Luis. He's really looking forward to being here," said Rodgers.

"We are obviously hoping we can get him on to another new contract. He's really looking forward to the new season."

Rodgers, who has replaced Kenny Dalglish as Liverpool manager, also revealed he plans to make a small number of quality signings before the new season.

He said: "I'm looking forward to bringing in three or four players that can really affect the group. The reality is there are very few players who can come and make a difference to Liverpool."

Gerrard Eyes Brazil 2014

Steven Gerrard feels he will still be good enough to make an impact for England at the next World Cup in Brazil 2014.

The Three Lions skipper produced arguably one of his best tournament displays at this summer's European Championships.

And now the 32-year-old Liverpool midfielder is ready for the long haul, just as long as he is managed properly.

He has also maintained his commitment to England manager Roy Hodgson.

"Since Roy has come in he's made it very clear he wants me around and wants me to be a help to the young players - and that my ability can still help the team.

"But I will speak to the manager in more detail and will find out what he wants my role to be.

"I'm sure he understands that with my age and my body, I need to be managed properly to have a big impact on this team and also Liverpool.

"The easy decision for me would be to walk away from all of this and say I want to prolong my Liverpool career. But the experiences I've had with this team over the last four games have been fantastic.

"I have enjoyed every minute of this tournament, except going out to Italy.

"And I still feel I'm good enough to have an impact at this level."