Liverpool ‘keeper Simon Mignolet, along with club captain Steven Gerrard, has been the subject of the vast majority of the criticism for the Reds slow start to the Premier League season. While not all of it is completely unwarranted, the Belgian shot stopper isn’t concerning himself with any of it.
“Well, the only pressure is what you put yourself under. What is pressure? Pressure is what is happening in Iraq at the moment when there is a war. That is pressure,” explained the 26-year old. “We are all football players and we are here to do our best. You want to work hard in training and we will see what happens at a weekend. I can only do my best, work hard, be positive and confident and I believe in myself. That is the only thing I can do.”
We’re still a few months away from the transfer window re-opening, but with Liverpool struggling to re-capture the kind of form that made them one of the most deadly teams in the Premier League last season, they’re already being linked with a number of reinforcements — the latest being Marseille striker Andre-Pierre Gignac.
The Reds have been hit hard by injuries in the opening frames of the season, and with star striker Daniel Sturridge still sidelined, they’re finding it hard to do the one thing they’ve consistently done so well under boss Brendan Rodgers: score goals. Summer signings Mario Balotelli and Rickie Lambert have yet to fully integrate themselves in the Anfield outfit’s set-up with time quickly running out on their honeymoon period.
Video courtesy of MBLFC
Phil Jagielka’s equalizer late into injury time in Liverpool’s 1-1 draw with cross-town rivals Everton has been described a few ways: magnificent, breath-taking, astounding, spectacular and there was even a “stupendous” thrown out there. Although Sky Sports pundit Gary Neville admits that scoring that kind of goal is something he could only dream about, the ex-Manchester United man also thinks that Reds ‘keeper Simon Mignolet could have kept it out.
Although the late buzz was that Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge was in contention for a spot on the bench for Saturday’s draw with cross-town rivals Everton, by the time kick-off rolled around, it was quite evident that he wasn’t quite up to snuff.
The 25-year old, who injured his thigh training on international duty, looked on course to make a return against the Toffee’s after returning to light training earlier than expected, but throwing him into the fray too early and having him pull up again wasn’t a chance that Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers was willing to take. This season, another match is always just around the corner and when the Reds travel to Switzerland on Wednesday, the Northern Irishman confirmed that Sturridge will be assessed before they decide whether or not he’ll play any part.
Liverpool midfielder Adam Lallana hasn’t made the kind of impact for his new side that he would of wanted to following a big money move from Premier League rivals Southampton over the summer. A knee injury put his pre-season on hold, and though he’s well versed in the rigours of the English game, he hasn’t quite bedded into the Reds set-up quite yet.
If his performance in Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Everton is any indication though, then it’s pretty apparent that the 26-year old is not only building up his fitness, but he’s rediscovering his feet as well. “I thought he was outstanding,” said Reds boss Brendan Rodgers when asked about the £23mil man. “To come into his first derby game and play with that quality and intensity [was impressive].”