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May 29, 2015
by Jim Boardman
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Remembering the 39 who died at Heysel

Liverpool v Juventus: In Memory and Friendship by Ben Sutherland, on Flickr

TODAY marks the 30th anniversary of the deaths of 39 football supporters on May 29th 1985 at the Heysel Stadium in Brussels, Belgium at the European Cup final between Juventus and Liverpool.

32 of the victims were Italian, four were Belgian, two were French and another was from Northern Ireland. The youngest to die was just 11 years old. Over 600 were injured.

This awful tragedy should never have happened and everyone involved in football  – fans, clubs, authorities – should do all they can to ensure nothing like it ever happens again, anywhere in the world.

Services are being held today in Liverpool and Turin. Phil Neal, Liverpool’s captain on the day of the disaster, will lay a wreath at the service being held at Anfield, which will be attended by other members of Liverpool’s squad at the time. Ian Rush, who played for both clubs and is currently an official LFC Ambassador, will attend the service in Turin.

Today is a day of sorrow and remembrance.
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May 28, 2015
by Jim Boardman
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David James: Liverpool need to show Sterling the money

Ex-Liverpool keeper says if Rodgers consider Sterling top talent he should be getting paid that kind of wage

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FORMER Spurs winger Glen Hoddle says Raheem Sterling should stay at Anfield – but former Reds keeper David James says Liverpool need to show him the money first.

The duo were speaking on the Clare Balding show, which airs tonight on BT Sport 2 and tomorrow on BBC2, and were asked for their opinions on the young Liverpool forward’s future. Hoddle thinks the best option for Sterling is to stay, but James thinks Liverpool need to make him an offer in keeping with their description of him as “top young talent” first.

Hoddle said: “If I was advising him I would say: ‘stay’.”
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Danny Ings (Pic: Wikipedia)

May 27, 2015
by Jim Boardman
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LFC-linked Danny Ings heading away from the speculation

Speculation continues to swirl but Ings is going for a break

Liverpool target Danny Ings is the subject of yet more speculation this evening as he prepares to go on a holiday and put all thoughts of his future to one side.

The 22-year-old is a free agent when his contract runs out on June 30th at which point other clubs can speak to him and agree personal terms without having to agree a fee with his club first. If the two clubs can’t come to a consensus on a fee a tribunal will decide for them. Ings is ineligible for a free transfer due to his age. Continue Reading →

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May 27, 2015
by Jim Boardman
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McParland set for Burnley DoF role

Ex-Reds Academy boss heads for Turf Moor

Burnley are set to appoint the former head of Liverpool’s Academy, Frank McParland, as their Director of Football.

McParland was at one time Liverpool’s chief scout, before leaving for roles at Bolton and then Watford. In 2009 he was handed the role of Academy Director, a post he continued in until 2013.

He was instrumental in bringing Raheem Sterling to the club from QPR as a teenager and outfought Manchester City for the signature of a young Jordon Ibe. He was also there to oversee the development of players like Jerome Sinclair and Andre Wisdom, who has just extended his contract with the first team.

After leaving Liverpool – the club removed McParland and Rodolfo Borrell without warning and waited almost a year before deciding to promote Alex Inglethorpe to Academy Director – McParland went to Brentford to become Sporting Director.

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Along with manager Mark Warburton and assistant manager David Weir, the former Everton player, McParland saw Brentford promoted to the Championship, their first spell in the second tier of the game in 21 years, where they exceeded expectations by some distance. Survival in the division would have been seen as the target, instead they made it into the play-offs for promotion to the Premier League.

Some time before the season ended Brentford decided they were going to take a different approach and announced that McParland, Warburton and Weir would be leaving at the end of the season. McParland was placed on gardening leave for the period.

Burnley have just been relegated to the Championship after a difficult season in the Premier League and McParland will arrive tasked with the job of helping them return to the lucrative top flight.

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May 27, 2015
by Jim Boardman
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Partying Liverpool players sing Kolo Toure’s song

Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard and team mates out on impromptu show for Kolo

It wasn’t the best of seasons for Liverpool, by any means, but it’s finally over and done with now and time to start planning for the next one. It’ll be a season without Steven Gerrard of course, as he heads for Los Angeles and the start of his MLS career, and he got the chance to say goodbye to his team mates by going with them on a short break to Dubai on Sunday. It looks like they’ve all been having a blast.

Some eyebrows were raised at the players heading for the airport together straight after a defeat to Stoke branded as “unacceptable” by Jamie Carragher and many others, particularly at the 5-0 half time scoreline. The trip was already planned before the Britannia collapse, however, and was seen as an opportunity for some bonding for a squad under fire.

Rumours of dressing room unrest are hardly surprising given the dire performances and embarrassing results from Liverpool over the last nine months and a few days relaxing by the beach with a couple of beers was one way of clearing the air and making sure everybody got concerns off their chests. As long as the golf clubs were kept out of sight it was hardly going to hurt and judging by a video that emerged today it’s been a real boost to morale.

Gerrard won’t be leading his Liverpool team mates into battle again but he did a fairly good job of leading them in a song and dance routine up the escalator, singing the Kolo Toure song and showing off some pretty decent moves.

Kolo had some good news himself this week with the announcement yesterday that he’d signed an extension to the contract that was due to expire this summer and he’ll be one of the last few old heads in next season’s squad.

It’s very rare that the players get the chance to spend time together without being ‘on duty’, even on club trips abroad for pre-season there’s a constant schedule to stick to for public appearances and training sessions, let alone matches, and they are never really able to stray too far away from club officials.

It’s always easy to come up with ideas in hindsight, and there is always someone waiting to complain, but what difference might a trip like this have made in the middle of one of the rough patches of 2014/15? Hopefully there aren’t any rough patches next term, but if there are, someone needs to get looking for some flights.

Liverpool squad singing and dancing in Dubia

Istanbul Reunion

May 23, 2015
by Jim Boardman
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In Istanbul… Watch LFC’s 10 Year Anniversary Reunion Live anywhere in the world

Liverpoool’s Istanbul 2005 squad are getting together for the first time in a decade and you can watch it live via video stream

It’s ten years since Rafa Benitez led his Liverpool side to glory in the Ataturk in Istanbul and captain Steven Gerrard lifted the Champions League trophy above his head.

It was of course the Reds’ fifth European Cup so they got to keep it – just as well seeing as Milan Baros saw fit to drop it in the madness of what went on post-match.

The story is one we all know but with many of these players meeting up for the first time in a decade we’re bound to hear a few more stories about the before, during and after – and the stories are always best coming straight from the stars of that night themselves.

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Steven Gerrard

May 22, 2015
by Anfield Road
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Luck for Liverpool to Improve Next Season

Steven Gerrard

It’s official: longtime Liverpool FC stalwart Steven Gerrard will be leaving Anfield for sunny Los Angeles, where he’ll join the L.A. Galaxy in Major League Soccer. The importance of Gerrard to the Liverpool squad cannot be understated, as he has been a staple of the midfield since joining the club in 1998. Gerrard will enter the US as a stranger in a strange land and spent his entire career up until now with Liverpool. Continue Reading →

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May 10, 2015
by Jim Boardman
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Rodgers: I took Stevie off for Stamford Bridge acclaim

Brendan Rodgers thought Liverpool were “outstanding” in the second half as their Champions League hopes just about died out against Chelsea.

 

LIVERPOOL could only manage a draw at Stamford Bridge against Champions Chelsea meaning they are now as good as out of the Champions League places for this season. The Liverpool goal was scored by Steven Gerrard, who Brendan Rodgers later revealed he had substituted, “just to give him the acclaim of probably his last time playing here at Stamford Bridge.”

The draw moves Liverpool a point closer to Manchester United but with two games apiece left the most they can hope for is to get into the top four on goal difference. For that to happen Liverpool would need to win both their games, with the Old Trafford side losing both theirs. Then there’s the 14-goal deficit to overhaul, by a team whose two top scorers have only managed 15 goals between them in the previous 36 games.

After the game manager Rodgers spoke to the cameras about his side’s performance. Despite the dropped points and the apparent end of Liverpool’s hopes of reaching their minimum target for the season, Rodgers seemed very upbeat.
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April 30, 2015
by Jim Boardman
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Puzzled Liverpool lack fight yet captain told to stay at home

LIVERPOOL captain Steven Gerrard made his 500th appearance for the Reds on Saturday – but he was told he wasn’t needed for Tuesday night’s trip to Hull – not even as part of the travelling party to give some encouragement to his squad mates in the dressing room. He wasn’t wanted.

He clearly isn’t the force he once was on the field but as a player who lives and breathes Liverpool – or did – he really should have been there if Liverpool really were looking to capitalise on the favour Everton did by beating Manchester United. He wasn’t there and he’ll be puzzled as to why.

The Reds’ defeat to Steve Bruce’s side was the latest in a season of disappointments for Liverpool and the captain will have felt those disappointments as keenly as any supporter, including those who normally travel all over the country to see the Reds but stayed away on Tuesday in protest at the spiralling cost of match tickets.

Gerrard’s Liverpool career comes to an end this season as he moves to pastures new for MLS side LA Galaxy, a decision he made after Liverpool apparently stalled on offering him a new deal, letting it approach its last six months. When he eventually did announce this would be his last season as a Liverpool player he said it was to avoid a situation where he spent more time on the bench than on the pitch. He wanted to be involved as a player as much as possible before he finally retires. He said he didn’t want to go into coaching yet, but it’s understood that’s an option that was never offered to him.
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