Liverpool's Mamadou Sakho describes City match as “D-Day”
- 09 April 2014 07:45
- Posted by @markbooth_mcfc
Unsurprisingly, the prospect of Sunday’s trip to Merseyside continues to dominate the City-centric storylines in this morning’s media.
While we already have a fairly good handle on what the encounter means on this side of the battle lines, it’s always good to get a feel for the view from the other side as the days, hours and minutes tick on towards the weekend.
Brendan Rodgers has hinted that the Merseysiders see this game as a free hit and that all of the pressure is on the visitors but that doesn’t seem to be a view shared by his French defender Mamadou Sakho.
The Liverpool man describes the game as potentially their biggest in nearly a quarter of a century.
"Of course this could be the biggest league match Liverpool have played in 24 years,” Sakho is quoted as saying in the Express.
"It's a match where you win three points but it's worth a lot more. It is a match that will place the winner in the best position to go and win the title.
"Ever since I arrived at the club, since the first month, I said it. I told my teammates that we are capable of winning the title. We have the quality and we just have to believe it. And voila...as the season progressed we saw Liverpool grow in strength playing such beautiful football.
"We've not stolen the position where we are today. We deserve it to be where we are today.
“We will see on D-day who is better prepared to take the points”
Taylor reckons that the club’s longest-serving player may depart in a bid to reignite his international career.
Arsenal Liverpool and Milan have all been linked with the defender in recent weeks.
“Richards, with almost 250 appearances to his name since making his debut in October 2005, believes he needs a fresh start elsewhere to play more regularly and try to rediscover the form that enabled him, at 18, to take Rio Ferdinand's record as the youngest defender to win an England cap,” the story reads.
“City had been trying to dissuade Richards from joining that list, offering a new deal with improved terms, but Pablo Zabaleta has established himself as Manuel Pellegrini's first-choice right-back this season and that has been uppermost in Richards' mind.
“His talks with Pellegrini have been amicable and there is an understanding within the club that it has been a difficult decision for a player who has been involved with them since the age of 14.
“City will want around £7m for the 25-year-old, citing his importance in their title-winning season before injuries allowed Zabaleta the chance to take over on the right-hand side of their defence.”
Taylor goes on to identify Barcary Sagna as a potential replacement.
Of course any confirmed transfer news will be reported here first on mcfc.co.uk this summer.
In other news, there is an eye on the future in this morning’s media round-up with a piece in the Manchester Evening News featuring quotes from Pellegrini on the subject of young players coming through the ranks.
The Chilean was responding to questions on the subject of Liverpool’s former City striker, Daniel Sturridge, who left the Blues for Chelsea in 2009.
“It’s very difficult for me to talk about a situation that happened maybe two, three, four, five years ago, I don’t know how many years ago but, in every club, it happens the same thing,” Pellegrini said.
“Normally not all the players arrive to the professional team at the club where they made their careers.
“I don’t know the reason but I think he is a very good player.”
The City boss is also confident that the club has a blueprint in place to produce more players of Sturridge’s quality.
He added: “I think that we have worked well between the first team and the academy. It’s very important for this group because they also believe in young players. For us, it’s very important the development of young players.”
While we’re on the subject of promising talents –City starlet Emyr Huws scored another beautiful long-range strike for Birmingham against Middlesbrough last night.
Middlesbrough 2 Blues 1 (Huws 36). That could be the goal of the season right there - a 35 yard screamer from Emyr Huws. #bluesLIVE— Birmingham City FC (@BcfcDotCom) April 8, 2014
Another wonder strike from @EmyrHuws1 for Birmingham tonight. The lad is on fire.— michael owen (@themichaelowen) April 8, 2014
The future’s bright.
The race for the Premier League has come to the boil, so make sure you’re there to lend your support as we bid for a second title in three years.
Tickets are still available for the two of the last first-team games taking place at the Etihad Stadium this season, against Sunderland and West Brom.
They could be decisive clashes, so don’t miss out.