Ahead of tonight’s massive clash at Goodison Park, manager Jurgen Klopp has revealed that he is excited for his first Merseyside Derby away from home as he said:
“For me it’s really special because it’s my first time at Goodison Park… It’s a very, very, very, very big game. The good thing around the derby is that I don’t have to say a lot because everyone knows what it is. It’s pretty special. I’m really looking forward to it, it’s a very important moment in the season. Both teams lately, after the last game, are in a good mood. We watched the game together in the hotel in Middlesbrough, Everton v Arsenal. You could already see the atmosphere there was good, we were quite excited about the game so it was intense and good to see. It will be a real battle between two good teams against each other in my first time at Goodison Park.”
Klopp also revealed that he watched last year’s fixture, Brendan Rodger’s last in charge, live on TV despite being unaware that he would soon replace the Northern Irishman.
Now, Klopp’s attentions are focused on Liverpool, and he has also been casting an eye over Brazilian holding midfielder Thiago Maia as ESPN Brazil claim that the Reds are the latest of Europe’s top clubs to track the 19-year-old. Zenit St Petersburg and Napoli have already had bids turned down according to reports.
The Santos star is said to have a 30% sell on clause included in his contract which is pushing his club’s asking price up, but he is gaining vast experience in Brazil and is now hoping for a move away to take his career to the next level to try to reach his undoubted potential.
Another young player hoping to fulfill his potential is defender Joe Gomez, who continues to rebuild his fitness after over 12 months out with a number of injuries. He has expressed his desire to fight for his place as he revealed:
“We spoke a bit about the future, loan talk and stuff like that. My aim isn’t to go out on loan. I want to challenge here – that has to be my aim after a long time out. I haven’t trained under him for a year… Me coming back and rushing straight out, there are pros and cons to it, but it was a compliment for him to say that. I’m thankful that he sees it that way. I’ve got to do what I can in training and try to work my way back into things. At the moment I’m focused on developing and learning under him, learning the team’s style of play and being myself again.”
Now, the former Charlton man will be hoping to push for a place on the bench at least sooner rather than later.
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