Liverpool evening headlines as Premier League address ‘void’ claims

Here are the Liverpool evening headlines on Tuesday, May 12.

Simeone denies Atletico got ‘lucky’ at Anfield

Atletico Madrid were on their way out of the Champions League before a mistake from Liverpool goalkeeper Adrian, but the Spanish club’s head coach doesn’t believe they got lucky to progress.

Diego Simeone has been responding to critics, and suggested the result was testament to the qualities held by his Atleti side.

“When they talk about how we were lucky, I think of a team that lost 2-0 and scored three goals,” Simeone told AS.

“That is not luck. The games must be valued as a whole.”

He suggested football is like boxing, because “you have to know when it is time to attack,” and pointed to the Anfield game as an example.

After Gini Wijnaldum’s goal took the game to extra-time, cancelling out Saul’s strike in Madrid, Roberto Firmino put the home side on the verge of going through.

However, two goals from Diego Llorente – the first courtesy of that Adrian error – and a clincher from Alvaro Morata saw the visitors progress.

What the FA vetoing any plans to void the Premier League season means for Liverpool’s title bid

The 2019/20 Premier League season will not be voided, according to FA chairman Greg Clarke, with the final positions set to be decided on ‘sporting merit’ if matches cannot be played.

This means any fears of Liverpool losing their title shot without playing another minute appear to have disappeared, but the manner in which the final positions will be decided is yet to be confirmed.

According to The Times, there is still an intention to fulfil the remaining fixtures, with the games to be played behind closed doors from June 12. This would leave Jurgen Klopp ’s team requiring a maximum of six points to seal the deal, thanks to their 25-point advantage over Manchester City.

Alternatively a points-per-game resolution – another idea which has been floated – would see the Reds crowned champions by a distance.

How loan move helped toughen up Liverpool’s ‘baby-faced Van Dijk’

Kidderminster’s assistant manager Russell Penn was sceptical when Liverpool sent baby-faced defender Rhys Williams on loan to Aggborough in an effort to toughen him up, but Penn – now head coach at the National League North Club – has been proved wrong.

Liverpool had been keen for the youngster, compared to Virgil van Dijk after his Youth Cup exploits, to face the sort of punishment defenders can often receive in non-league football.

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And, with Williams picking up a broken nose and a concussion during his time with the former Football League club, as well as earning a straight red card in a defeat at Brackley, the plan to toughen him up appears to have worked.

“He came in, looking the part, and you’re thinking oh my God, he’s Virgil van Dijk in disguise! ” says Penn, who took over as manager in February.

“He’s baby-faced, talks like a baby and everything, but I tell you what. He dived straight into it, rented a house with four other lads and was a really big part of the club straight away.”

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