09 November 2006

Liverpool News and Notes

Sissoko set to miss 3 months. Not. Good. I said a bit about this last night, and I’ll have more to say over the weekend about the impact this will have on the Arsenal game. I’m having a hard time coming to terms with 3 months. That means we won’t see Momo until February at the earliest. The only game Liverpool has against the ‘big 3’ over that period is Chelsea at home in January, and the Champions League knockout round doesn’t begin until late February, but this is still a massive, massive blow. He will definitely be out for the remainder of the League Cup and approximately 15 or so Premiership games by my count (about a 1/3 of the season), at the least.

With Hamann in the team, Liverpool would have a ready-made replacement, but now Liverpool will be heavily reliant on Bolo Zenden. Maybe Zenden will improve with more playing time; he was a lot better yesterday versus Birmingham, but playing well against a second-string Championship side isn’t the reassurance I’m looking for. I don’t reckon Rafa will frequently use Gerrard and Alonso together in the center unless they really impress or he really must.

Liverpool dismiss Benitez report. Evidently Rafa’s agent claimed that Benitez wants to manage in Italy, and would leave Liverpool to do so. That’s bad enough, and almost assuredly bollocks, but can someone explain to me why he’s telling this to The ***? Agents may do this all the time, and while it bothers me that the club is forced to come out every month or so and deny that their manager is going to Madrid or Italy, it’s par for the course when you have one of the best managers in the world. But his agent giving those quotes to THAT paper? Learn your history, Manuel.

Ipswich want Danny Guthrie on loan. I’d be surprised if this happens. Not only does the Sissoko injury leave Liverpool lighter in central midfield, but Guthrie has begun to get games in the Carling Cup, which is usually the first step towards breaking into Benitez’s plans. Of course, at age 18 (whoops, 19), more first team football would help his development, but I find it hard to believe that Rafa would want him to go or that Guthrie would spurn an opportunity for more playing time at Liverpool.

Daily Mirror claims Liverpool in for Valencia goalkeeper. Ah, the Mirror. Must be a slow news day. Liverpool seemingly can’t get enough keepers, with Reina, Dudek, Carson, David Martin, and David Roberts on the roster. News flash: Liverpool isn’t selling Reina. It’s not as if Benitez has lost faith in him, nor is it as if Rafa has a reason to lose faith in him. And Pepe’s the same age as this mystery keeper. More nonsense, what is it with today’s papers? I’ve never heard of Butelle, does anyone know who he is?

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