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Rodgers laments derby injuries

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers fears that a number of injuries for both his side and Everton could undermine the quality of Tuesday's Merseyside derby.

Last Updated: 28/01/14 at 19:12 Post Comment

Brendan Rodgers will be without a number of players for Tuesday's game

Brendan Rodgers will be without a number of players for Tuesday's game

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Rodgers will be without defenders Daniel Agger, Mamadou Sakho, Glen Johnson, Jose Enrique and midfielder Lucas Leiva, while Everton could have up to nine players missing at Anfield.

And the Reds boss admits this could mean the Premier League match fails to live up to the standard set by the 3-3 draw between the sides at Goodison Park earlier this season.

"There are still going to be quality players and the football ideas of both teams will come out, but it is unfortunate a number of players are out of the game - and a lot of them starting players - it would've made it a different game," said Rodgers.

"It is unfortunate both teams are coming into the game with not the strongest squads because both have picked up injuries."

Rodgers is hopeful midfielder Joe Allen will recover from a hamstring problem in time to line up in Tuesday's match but is reluctant to push the player and risk further injury.

"We need to see with Joe," Rodgers said on Monday. "He was on the training field today but it is a case of assessing as to whether it will push him too much for this game because we don't want another injury in a key area.

"If we had a raft of players we could put him in and if he came out (injured) we could put someone else in

"We have to think not only for tomorrow night but for the next few weeks."

The 222nd Merseyside derby is a huge game for both teams as they continue their pursuit of a top-four finish.

A Liverpool win would see the Reds move four points ahead of their rivals, but an Everton victory would see the Blues seize the initiative in the chase for UEFA Champions League football.

"It is a very important game as a victory puts us four points clear. Our home form over the course of the season has been brilliant," said Rodgers.

"Looking at our team when we have everyone available we are a very strong outfit.

"I have great confidence in the team of players and for us the key is Champions League qualification.

"When I came in here Everton had finished above Liverpool and last season finished above us also.

"Everton's basis is a good defensive record, still stable from what they have been over a few years - we are a team who have upped the ante in terms of our offensiveness."

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Readers' Comments

W

e have the personnel. The trick is keeping them fit. Carrick and Blind have missed large chunks of the season, while the defence has been one muddled mess of intermittent stooges, all coming and going at various intervals thus far. We may be just short of title winning quality, but we're half way through. An injury crisis to either of the top two could change things. Optimistic, yes, but not unrealistic.

HarryBoulton
One Point And One Conclusion For United

P

arish is the man to blame for this shambles. Pulis must be chuckling into his left over turkey sandwich. I pray this doesn't mean the Neil Warnock media machine will kick in now and he'll be back on the telly box.

magicfuller
Warnock sacked by Palace

W

e almost found a new way to lose, just when I thought it was getting boring Giroud does that. Although Arsenal are deservedly called 'soft' the entire midfield is out injured. Still must admit MU are managing to win despite a similar raft of absentees. Think the Gunners have good players but poorly coached.

gettalong
Wenger: Giroud deserved red

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