The lowlights? Do you even want to watch them?
With the spectre of facing defending Champions League holders Real Madrid home and away up next, these are troubling times indeed for Liverpool.
The Reds hopes of navigating their way out of Group B and into the knock-out rounds of the Champions League were dealt a major blow with a 1-0 reversal at the hands of FC Basel in Switzerland last night. Marco Streller scored a poachers goal after embattled ‘keeper Simon Mignolet initially prevented an own goal following Martin Skrtel’s inexplicable header towards his own goal from a dangerous corner kick. Defensive error — the on-going hallmark of the Anfield outfit — aside, the visitors created little in the way of problems for their welcoming hosts as the Swiss side kept their rather impressive record against English opposition alive and well.
Taking the Swiss on merit
Former Saints captain Adam Lallana left Southampton for Liverpool to play Champions League football, and now that he’s about to make his second start in Europe’s most important club competition, he’s not about to take any team lightly — including FC Basel, who the Reds will square off against later today.
“You can’t underestimate any team. You have to take them all on merit. We know Real Madrid have some exceptional players and I heard in that game Basel had a few chances as well, so it could have been different,” he told the clubs official website before flying off with the squad to Switzerland. “We feel that if we concentrate on ourselves and put in a good performance, keep progressing and getting better, like we feel we have been doing, then we can get the right result.”
Something we’re looking at
With Liverpool set to face FC Basel later on today in their second Champions League match of the Group Stages, the Reds have confirmed that they are considering handing long-standing captain Steven Gerrard a contract extension.
“It is something we are looking at as a club, and with Steven and how he feels. He is still in a real good physical condition. He’s 34, he trains every day, he never needs a day’s rest. He wants to work,” explained Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers. “This is a genuine superstar and this country hasn’t produced many of them. He’s been a genuine world class player for so many years. How he still strikes a ball, there aren’t many like him, both with his passing and his shooting.”
Rodgers wants him to stay put
Although Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers confirmed that injured striker Daniel Sturridge could have a role to play when West Bromwich Albion visit Anfield this weekend, the Northern Irishman has insisted that the 25-year old is not fit enough to link up with England over the coming international break.
Sturridge, who returned from his last jaunt with the Three Lion’s carrying a thigh problem, has yet to return for the struggling Reds. Rodgers has watched his side go win less in their last three Premier League outings with a serious lack of goals doing them no favours — and should he be selected by England boss Roy Hodgson, you have to wonder exactly what the Liverpool boss might do.