While players are out on international break there are still news and updates about Liverpool and their club, no worries.
Liverpool Echo has an interesting story on Xherdan Shaqiri and his disappearing from the involvement in the chase for the Premier League trophy. How the player, who impressed so much in the latter parts of 2018, no longer looks part of the chase.
So why is that, why is Jurgen Klopp no longer trusting his “new signing” and why has Shaqiri not made more than three starts out of fourteen possible. The verdict is that Klopp must change his formation to slot the Swizz into his side.
There are also a Manè in great form that was absent from the team for a while due to international obligation and an injury, and we all know what type of form he has been into after returning.
Shaqiri started that 1-1 home game v. Leicester, a result probably not satisfaction for Klopp and after that it’s been a dry period. Another verdict is that games have been more of a defensive act and that playing Shaqiri will not be ideal, since his attributes are pretty much only offensive.
Did you know that Jurgen Klopp actually is Norwegian, and that he in his earlier years as an amateur player actually made his name in the “late night life” as Jorn Andersen. Andersen was a well known forward at Eintracht Frankfurt, while young Klopp was part of the amateur team and made his move and decided to be Jorn Andersen.
Jorn Andersen was a well respected player in the Bundesliga, but in Norway it’s been a bit different. After Andersen decided to become German, to avoid the foreign quota problem back then, he was not really “interesting” for Norwegian media, since he was no longer regarded as a player in content for a place in the national team.
After his playing career he took up coaching and one of his greatest achievements was to bring Mainz 05 up the the Bundesliga in 2009. He took over from Jurgen Klopp who had resigned in 2008. After a run of difficult results in that first season back Andersen was surprisingly fired and a certain Thomas Tuchel took over.
While Tuchel and Klopp later became Borussia Dortmund managers and now are in charge of PSG and Liverpool, Andersen never really managed to build on his achievements at Mainz. After his short lived period in Bundesliga as head coach, he has travelled in football, and he is best known for being the football manager of North Korea from 2016 to 2018. He is now in charge of South Korean club team Incheon United.
One former great at Anfield John Toshack turned 70 on the 22nd of March, and of course a big congratulation to a great player and later a coach for the national teams of Wales and Macedonia. Toshack never managed a club in the Premier League, and it looks as if that will not be happening, but he has been in charge of some major clubs, with Real Madrid (in charge twice) and Real Sociedad (in charge for three periods) as the two that stands out, with other jobs at Swansea City, Deportivo, Besiktas and Sporting Lisbon as the major once.
His league record tally at Liverpool, 74 goals in 172 league games stands out as impressive. He was signed by Bill Shankly in 1970 from Cardiff City for a fee of £111.000, which back then was a club record for Liverpool. Remembering of course his “little and large” combination up front with another young forward, signed from the lower leagues, Kevin Keegan. The also became known as “Batman and Robin”, and had great success winning the League, FA Cup and major trophies in Europe.
Toshack is also one that has both played and managed the Wales national team. 40 caps in a period of 11 years, scoring 13 goals, and then coming in as manager from 2004 to 2010. Toshack was also in charge of the national team a short period in 1994, lasting 10 games as his main priority was Real Sociedad taking up the position as a part-time job.
John Toshack has an impressive 40 years run in football management, but in his latter years drifted a bit out of the limelight being last seen as “boss” of Iranian club Tractor Sazi, a post he left in September last year. Before his short period in Iran, he had success in Moroccan football with Wydad Casablanca, winning the league in 2014/15.
Strangely he never got a top job in English football, but of course been considered even at his former club Liverpool. His tally of bringing in trophies is heavily impressive, winning Primera Division with Real Madrid back in 1990 as the big one.
On the transfer front talks are ongoing as Liverpool are fighting for major trophies this season. Their impressive win against Bayern Munich in the Champions League and the run in the Premier League makes them favorites on all arenas with Jurgen Klopp cruising and hopefully close to bringing home his first major trophy as Liverpool manager. No one deserves it better, we really hope for Liverpool this season.
Chelsea winger Callum Hudson-Odoi is a major transfer target and a fee of £40million is said to be the cost. A risky signing if it happens as youngsters looks a bit difficult to slot into the first team with stiff competition for those three places up front.
Many believe that the weakest link in the Liverpool team is the central defensive position alongside Virgil Van Dijk. Matip and Lovren are two players to have struggled and Gomez seems to be hit with injuries as soon as he establish himself.
Many believed that England defenders Harry Maguire and John Stones would be targets for Liverpool, even Everton defender Michael Keane should be on the list, but none of them seems to be of interest.
Late reports reveals that Brighton & Hove Albion flank midfielder Pascal Gross could be in contention for a move, as Jurgen Klopp is ready to bolster his squad in the summer. Gross is a great passer of the ball and his tally of assists and correct passess down south is not only impressing Klopp.