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Man United the ‘perfect game’ for Liverpool, says Rodgers

first_img Man United is the perfect game for Liverpool, according to Brendan Rodgers Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers believes a trip to Old Trafford to face a winning Man United side is perfect for his players despite their shaky confidence.Failure to get out of the Champions League group stages following a 1-1 draw against Basel in midweek was a considerable blow and defeat for Liverpool this weekend would leave them 10 points adrift of their arch-rivals and put another campaign among Europe’s elite further from sight.United meanwhile, although far from their fluent best, have won five games in a row and are third in the Premier League.But Rodgers insists facing up to their north west enemy could be the ideal remedy.“The game against Manchester United is perfect for us and we hope to take confidence and spirit into the game,” he said.“It’s more than a football game – you’re representing a city and a group of supporters where there has been a great rivalry over many years.“You’ve just got to find the ways to refocus the minds of the players, forget and learn from the experiences, and look at it as an opportunity to go and get onto a winning run.“You have to be [determined] when you’re at a club this size. The expectancy is what you want.“We’re very much focused on improving that performance level. We know that we can do that – we can put a run of results together that can keep us climbing.“But really we want to keep improving on the performance level. As my teams have shown, we’ll get better as the season goes on but we want to start that sooner rather than later.”Unsurprisingly, criticism increased after their Champions League exit but Rodgers said they would shrug that off and look to bounce back.“One thing that we’ve always had here has been the spirit in the camp,” he added.“No matter what the outside influences, what is spoken and written about, we’ve always retained that strong mentality and the focus is very much back on getting ourselves sorted for the weekend.“It was vital we could not dwell on the disappointment for too long.”Having guided the side to within touching distance of the title last season the tables have turned for Rodgers.The Anfield boss is now third-favourite to be the next manager to lose his job, behind bottom side Leicester’s Nigel Pearson and Alan Irvine, whose West Brom team have won just one in nine league matches.Rodgers built a considerable amount of credit with owners Fenway Sports Group after last season, which culminated in him being given a new contract, and he is not worried about the Americans wielding the axe just yet.“One thing I have always had with the owners and the players is solidarity,” he said.“Of course the owners have seen the progress over the last couple of years and like us all are disappointed with performances this season.“But it is about reinforcing what we have done well in the last couple of years but planning to keep the club moving forward.“That is the key objective for them and a primary objective for myself.” 1last_img read more

Gareth Southgate underlines need for education to tackle racism

first_img REPLY Gareth Southgate has called for education in the fight against racism after the disgraceful abuse suffered by England’s players in Montenegro.The Three Lions sealed an impressive 5-1 victory to take control of their Euro 2020 qualifying group, but the football became a mere side note after Danny Rose and Callum Hudson-Odoi were subjected to monkey chants from the home supporters. Raheem Sterling celebrated the fifth goal by pulling his ears as a sign of defiance to what he later called ‘racists’ on social media.And speaking after the game, Southgate argued that society must get to the root of the issue instead of handing out ‘worthless’ sanctions.“I don’t think I need to comment on what was said,” England boss Southgate said. “It was clear to everybody that there were comments made. Son ban confirmed as Tottenham fail with appeal to overturn red card BEST OF no dice “There’s an innocence about young people that is only influenced by older people. So, we have to make sure that the education is right for everybody.“In our country, (it’s) the same. I’ve said this before, I’m not sitting here just criticising what’s happened tonight because in our country we have the same issue. We’re not free of it.“You can sanction clubs (or countries), but frankly that’s not going to stop one or two people who are of a mindset from doing what they want to do. RANKED Berahino hits back at b******t Johnson criticism – ‘I was in a dark place at Stoke’ LATEST FOOTBALL NEWS REVEALED LIVE on talkSPORT Ronaldo warned Lukaku how hard scoring goals in Serie A would be before Inter move Top nine Premier League free transfers of the decade 2 “Reflecting on sanctions, sanctions are only of any use if they lead to education.“Sanctions are worthless if there is nothing alongside that to help educate people.“My kids don’t think for one minute about where people are born, what language they speak, what colour they are. Which teams do the best on Boxing Day in the Premier League era? Where Ancelotti ranks with every Premier League boss for trophies won huge blow Southgate underlined the need for education REVEALED Rose and Hudson-Odoi were subjected to racist abuse in Montenegro 2 There are six live commentaries across the talkSPORT network this week. Find out what they are and where to hear them, below… ADVICE Oxlade-Chamberlain suffers another setback as Klopp confirms serious injury Every time Ally McCoist lost it on air in 2019, including funny XI reactions Czech Republic vs Brazil (Tuesday) – talkSPORT 2West Brom vs Birmingham (Friday) – talkSPORT 2Brighton vs Southampton (Saturday) – talkSPORT 2West Ham vs Everton (Saturday) – talkSPORTMiddlesbrough vs Norwich (Saturday) – talkSPORT 2Portsmouth vs Sunderland (Sunday) – talkSPORT 2 “So, we have to make sure that we educate young people because we have a better chance with young people and then we’ve got to lead that as far and as wide as we possibly can.”UEFA are set to investigate and their regulations state that if supporters engage in racist behaviour then ‘the member association or club responsible is punished with a minimum of a partial stadium closure’.It was a sad end to an impressive night for England, who showed resolve and skill as they scored five goals or more in back-to-back matches for the first time since 1984.Ross Barkley’s brace was complemented by goals from Michael Keane, Harry Kane and Raheem Sterling as the Three Lions overcame the hosts’ early opener.last_img read more