Jürgen Klopp suffered his first defeat as manager of Liverpool in the game against Crystal Palace prior to the international break and, the German tactician voiced his disappointment as fans were seen leaving before the final whistle was blown.
And the 48-year old will aim to use this week to work with the players who are not away on international duty and make sure everything is in place for the tricky trip to the Etihad against Manchester City next Saturday.
There are a few injury concerns for Klopp to worry about – with influential defender Mamadou Sakho being the latest to get injured – but the Merseyside outfit continues to be linked with new faces who could ignite the manager’s ‘gegenpressing’ 4-2-3-1 style at Anfield and help return the club to glory days.
Having said that, there are stories currently doing the rounds at Liverpool today.
Spanish midfielder Xabi Alonso could be set to return to Liverpool as he is unlikely to be offered a new contract at Bayern Munich at the end of the season, as per Tuttomercato. The gifted passer is also rumoured to be keen on a return to Anfield, where he won the Champions League in 2005. However, Alonso also has offers from Qatar and America.
Also, Liverpool striker Mario Balotelli – who is currently on loan at AC Milan could face further frustration in a bid to return from injury as he may have to have surgery on a groin injury which could see him miss the entire winter period. The ESPN claims Milan have given the Italian striker an eight-day deadline before deciding whether to go ahead with the operation.
Meanwhile, the Sun have chipped in with a claim that Liverpool could have to do battle with Manchester United if they are to sign hotly-tipped youngster Leroy Sane. The Schalke attacker has bagged four goals in the Bundesliga this season and Louis van Gaal wants him to replace Antonio Valencia who is set to be out for five months with a foot injury.
And James Milner has revealed he is aiming to be back to full fitness before Liverpool’s highly-anticipated clash against Manchester City next weekend. The Reds’ midfielder, who missed last weekend’s game against Palace said: “It’s always disappointing to miss any games – and obviously missing last weekend and the England games is disappointing. It shouldn’t be too long and hopefully I’ll be back for the next game. But we’ll have to wait and see. You never like to put a time frame on it because its hamstring and they’re always difficult and a bit unpredictable, but hopefully I’ll be alright. It’s disappointing, but these things happen and hopefully I’ll be back soon [per ESPN].
Liverpool have confirmed to West Ham that they are interested in Manuel Lanzini, as per the Liverpool Echo. The Argentine ace is currently on loan at Slaven Bilic’s side and the Hammers want to tie him down to a permanent deal at Upton Park, but the Reds are keeping tabs on the pacey attacker.
Meanwhile, Liverpool chief executive Ian Ayre has admitted the club are struggling to get young fans to attend games due to the ticketing structure which currently exists at Anfield, the Liverpool Echo has claimed. “We have the enviable position of selling out every game but not having the route in to have a 12 or 13-year old come” Ayre said, while speaking at a major football event in New York. Local supporters group want to discriminate against travelling fans to get more Scousers back in Anfield. Stadium renovation could help.
Lastly, Borussia Dortmund ace Ilkay Gundogan is eager on a reunion with Jürgen Klopp at Anfield and the German boss is also ready to sign him, as per Tuttosport [via Metro]. It is claimed Gundogan will cost the Reds €25m.