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The FA Cup Fourth Round

Speroni: Nothing fazes me

Crystal Palace goalkeeper Julian Speroni insists he is not fazed by the prospect of facing Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge as the Eagles take on Liverpool on Saturday.

Last Updated: 06/10/13 at 14:14 Post Comment

Julian Speroni: No qualms about facing in-form Liverpool strikers Luis Suarez an

Julian Speroni: No qualms about facing in-form Liverpool strikers Luis Suarez an

Argentinian Suarez and England international Sturridge have partnered in the Liverpool front line 11 times in 2013, scoring 13 goals for the Reds at an average of 1.18 per game.

The lethal duo combined to sink Sunderland last weekend, with Sturridge opening the scoring before Suarez bagged a brace as Liverpool prevailed 3-1.

However, 34-year-old Speroni fears not the Reds pairing and believes his own Argentinian roots have given him a solid foundation to build upon.

"I watched the Sunderland game last week and Suarez and Sturridge looked very strong together," he told the Sun.

No fear

"But they don't scare me. It is because I always think back to my time in the Argentina Under 20 side.

"I grew up alongside some fantastic players in Argentina who have gone on to become some of the best players in the world."

Speroni's time in the Argentina youth system coincided with the rise of former Valencia attacker Pablo Aimar and ex-Barcelona frontman Javier Saviola, which the Palace shot-stopper believes has prepared him well.

"In training I would have to keep them quiet," he added. "That was a difficult task - you won't get one tougher than that, even now.

"I expect that Suarez and Sturridge will be licking their lips playing us. But, as a goalkeeper, I am more experienced now.

Survival

"I have played against these top strikers before, so nothing will faze me."

A 2-0 defeat at the hands of Southampton last time out prompted speculation over the Eagles' desire but Speroni is adamant Palace have their eyes firmly fixed on retaining their Premier League status.

"It's just because we are at the wrong end of the table that it is an easy thing to say," he said. "We have come through administration and relegation battles just to stay in the Championship.

"Of course we want to enjoy being on this stage, but we are not here to make up the numbers.

"All the players feel we can play and survive at this level. There are some new players and it will take time for us to gel. We just have to be patient and stick together to get the results going our way."

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