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Three things we learnt from Liverpool’s 1-1 draw against Manchester City



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In one of the Premier League’s most entertaining games of the season, it could be the misses that prove to be more meaningful than the goals scored at the Etihad on Sunday afternoon. In an even first half, Manchester City could claim that they should have had a penalty as James Milner did enough to put off Raheem Sterling with an open goal only a yard away.

Second half, it was Milner who made the major impact at the other end after Gael Clichy conceded a penalty by clattering Roberto Firmino from behind with a high foot added into the mix. Milner scored his seventh penalty of the season to maintain his 100% record amid boos from the home support.

Sergio Aguero found the net to equalise for the home side though, making the most of Ragnar Klavan’s confusion to step off and fire home when presented with the opportunity to, despite missing a number of chances both before and after that.

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Adam Lallana had the best chance of the game fall his way as Roberto Firmino completed a beautiful move by cutting back to the England international who missed the ball almost entirely with acres of time and space when he surely should have scored.

However, both managers made defensive substitutions late on as they seemed content with a point each, with neither prepared to risk their precious top four status as Manchester United keep up the pace behind them.

Read on over the next few pages to see what we have learnt from the game…

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Sam is a football journalist focusing on English football at all levels and Spanish football. He also writes for Spain's biggest daily sports newspaper, MARCA, as well as The Boot Room. Find Sam on Twitter at @samleveridge.


Luka Modric could prove the perfect Emre Can replacement at Liverpool

The Croatian has been linked with a move to Anfield with Emre Can expected to leave this summer.



Photo: Getty Images

Emre Can looks set to be on his way out of Anfield this summer as the 24-year-old German international seems unwilling to sign a new contract at Liverpool.

Spanish news outlet El Gol Digital have recently linked Real Madrid with the German international, although they would have to fend off interest from European rivals Juventus.

Speaking to Sport 1, Can recently expressed his desire to be featured in the world team of the year at some point in his career.

(Photo by Paul Ellis/Getty Images)

For the 24-year-old, it would be difficult to turn down a club of Madrid’s magnitude and his departure would represent a blow for Jurgen Klopp’s side.

Nonetheless, a swap deal for Real Madrid star Luka Modric would be a superb way to ease the pain of the German’s exit.

Reports linking Can with the Bernabeu come just a matter of weeks after Spanish newspaper Dario Gol expressed Luka Modric’s desire to leave the current Champions League holders.

The Croation international is reportedly keen on a return to the Premier League return, with Liverpool, along with Tottenham, named as front-runners for his signature.

Even at 32 years of age, the Croatian midfielder is still one of the best players in the world and would represent an excellent short-term fix for the Reds.

Modric was named in the FIFA FIFPro World XI in January and ranked as the 6th best player in the world in the Guardian’s prestigious Top 100 rankings.

His brilliant passing range, his superb footballing brain, and his delicate skills are all crucial components that would boost Liverpool’s attacking threat.

(Photo by Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images)

Combined with a world-class attack consisting of Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino, and Sadio Mane, the Reds truly could stake a claim for the most dynamic frontline in England next season.

Most importantly, the addition of Modric could finally mark the replacement for Philippe Coutinho that many Liverpool supporters have been begging for.

A seasoned international with tremendous experience at the upper levels of world football would be a remarkable transfer for Klopp’s side, and would surely bolster their title aspirations in 2018/19.

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English Premier League

Andrew Robertson the most important Liverpool summer signing

The Scottish left-back has plugged a gap that has existed at Liverpool for some time.



Mohamed Salah rightly received all the praise yesterday, after Liverpool put Watford to the sword in the Premier League.

Liverpool beat the Hornets 5-0 at Anfield, with the Egyptian scoring four of the goals.

It is hard to argue with Salah being the club’s best signing in the summer. His tally of 37 goals in 43 games certainly highlights that fact. 

However, the most important signing might have been that of Andrew Robertson.

The Scottish left-back joined from Hull City in a deal, reported by the Independent, to be worth around £8 million. That price-tag is now looking an absolute bargain.

(Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)

Liverpool have had problems at left-back for a number of seasons.

Alberto Moreno looked like being the solution. However, the Spaniard’s defensive work and decision making made him a liability.

Jon Flanagan, who was Brendan Rodgers’ regular left-back, has not reached similar heights since a series of knee injuries decimated his promising career.

Last season saw James Milner fill the role. The experienced midfielder played well out of position but long-term, was not the solution.

Now, Liverpool have Robertson. The Scotland international has made the step up from his time at Hull with ease.

The 24-year-old Glaswegian is not only a threat going forward, but defensively he is exceptional.

His delivery into the box is undoubtedly exemplary, but he is equally adept at stopping opposing players from getting near Liverpool’s.

Liverpool have managed to bring in a player perfectly suited to Jurgen Klopp’s style of play.

Heavy-metal is the way Robertson plays in both attack and defence and the fans at Anfield already love him.

(Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

At just £8 million and only 24-years-old Liverpool picked up the bargain of the summer in the Premier League.

If Robertson can continue to progress and play with the same level of consistency he already has, then a decade of dominance at left-back could follow as Liverpool’s left-back.

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Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah within touching distance of all-time Premier League goal-scoring record

The Egyptian international has 28 Premier League goals this term.



Photo: Getty Images

Anfield witnessed a truly special moment in the second half of Liverpool’s 5-0 thrashing of Watford on Saturday. Winning 3-0, Liverpool were running riot in wintry conditions, and Mohamed Salah collected the ball just inside the box on a hat-trick.

What followed was absolute magic, emblematic of a dream debut season in the north-west for the Egyptian. Salah was mobbed by three defenders, but left all three in the dust with one deft cut-back.

Then, with two more Watford players crashing in on the ball, Salah remarkably managed to poke an improvised finish into the far corner past the helpless Orestis Karnezis.

As Salah wheeled away in celebration, tongue stuck out and arms extended, Anfield reveled in history in the making. That goal marked Salah’s 27th of the Premier League season and he would go on to score his 28th just eight minutes later.

(Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images)

The Egyptian is on course to smash the Premier League scoring records in emphatic fashion. The current record is 31 goals, a tally achieved by Alan Shearer in 1995/96, Cristiano Ronaldo in 2007/08, and fellow Red Luis Suarez in 2013/14.

With seven matches remaining, including fixtures against the likes of West Brom and Stoke, few would bet against Salah demolishing the 22-year-old record.

The achievement would place Salah in the illustrious company of Premier League legends, an incredible feat for a player who many in England wrote off during his short spell at Chelsea.

Thanks to Salah, Liverpool have barely missed a step after the departure of Philippe Coutinho in January, advancing to the Champions League quarterfinals and cementing their top-four position.

The prolific winger is proving all of his doubters wrong in audacious fashion, and with a Premier League Golden Boot and goal-scoring record seemingly on the way, he is one of the most in-form players in the world.

The early-April European clash with Manchester City will provide Salah with, perhaps, his biggest stage yet. Expect the top goalscorer in England to rise to the occasion.

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