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English Premiership

Drifting Liverpool seek Arsenal spark

LIVERPOOL-SCOREDLONDON, December 19- Liverpool will hope to draw inspiration from memories of last season’s thrilling 5-1 demolition of Arsenal when the teams resume hostilities in the Premier League at Anfield this weekend.

Arsene Wenger’s side were routed on their last trip to Liverpool’s famous stadium in February, when a devastating four-goal salvo inside the first 20 minutes left the north London club reeling.

It was the start of an 11-game winning run that took Liverpool to within sight of the title.

Their subsequent collapse has been followed by a wretched start to the current campaign, with last weekend’s chastening 3-0 defeat at Manchester United leaving them 18 points behind leaders Chelsea in 11th place.

But having emerged from a taxing trip to Championship leaders Bournemouth in the League Cup with a 3-1 victory in mid-week, manager Brendan Rodgers is hopeful that his side have turned a corner.

“Slowly we are getting there. I’ve said that my teams have shown at Liverpool that we get better and better,” Rodgers said after Liverpool’s quarter-final success at Dean Court.

“A lot of players are adapting. I’ve been looking to find ways and solutions to make us more creative as we haven’t been that at all this season and that is the mark of the team.”

Arsenal lost 3-2 at Stoke City in their last domestic away game, but have since produced back-to-back 4-1 wins over Galatasaray in the Champions League and Newcastle United in the league.

The home victory over Newcastle left Wenger’s side in sixth place in the table, five points clear of Liverpool and two points shy of the Champions League places.

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Wenger has revealed that winger Theo Walcott, who has played only two games this season following a long-term knee injury, is in contention to feature after shrugging off a groin complaint.

“He is back in training today (Thursday), but only today,” Wenger told the club website. “I might take him. I don’t know yet until he is back to full training. Let’s see.”

– Christmas number one –

Chelsea’s three-point lead over second-place Manchester City, coupled with a superior goal difference (+23 to +19), means that they are practically assured of being in first place on Christmas Day.

But with Jose Mourinho’s side not in action until Monday, when they welcome Stoke to Stamford Bridge, champions City can draw level with them by winning at home to Crystal Palace on Saturday.

While City are on a five-match winning run in the league, cross-town rivals Manchester United will be looking to record a seventh consecutive victory when they travel to Aston Villa.

Last Sunday’s victory over Liverpool enabled Louis van Gaal’s team to remain eight points behind Chelsea and five behind City, prompting captain Wayne Rooney to declare that they still have designs on the title.

Villa saw a five-game unbeaten run come to an end in a 1-0 loss at West Bromwich Albion last weekend and have a dismal home record against United, who they have not beaten in the league at Villa Park since August 1995.

Fourth-place West Ham, beaten only once in their last 10 matches, host bottom club Leicester, who are now five points from safety.

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Leicester have not won since stunning Manchester United 5-3 in September, but West Ham manager Sam Allardyce says that Nigel Pearson’s team are no pushovers.

“Leicester are a hard team to break down. They work very hard for each other,” he told his pre-match media conference.

“Despite their run of games without a win, they haven’t been turned over by anyone — it’s only ever by the odd goal — so there are a lot of dangers in Nigel’s teams that we need to be well aware of.”

Fifth-place Southampton are on a very different trajectory to West Ham and saw their run of consecutive defeats extended to five on Tuesday when they crashed to third-tier Sheffield United in the League Cup.

Ronald Koeman’s side entertain Everton on Saturday.

Elsewhere, improving Burnley visit Tottenham Hotspur in a near dress rehearsal for next month’s FA Cup third-round encounter, while Sunderland visit Newcastle on Sunday for the first Tyne-Wear derby of the campaign.

Fixtures

Saturday (1500 GMT unless otherwise stated):

Aston Villa v Manchester United, Hull City v Swansea City, Manchester City v Crystal Palace (1245 GMT), Queens Park Rangers v West Bromwich Albion, Southampton v Everton, Tottenham Hotspur v Burnley, West Ham United v Leicester City

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Sunday

Newcastle United v Sunderland (1330 GMT), Liverpool v Arsenal (1600 GMT)

Monday (2000 GMT)

Stoke City v Chelsea

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0 Comments

  1. karisdom

    January 9, 2012 at 4:47 pm

    The people who should offer the evidence is the village market management by offering the commission the tape recorded by security cameras.If it is true the  DCJ bought the medicines, went to the car and instead of leaving, went back to the guard  with a pistol,then,she should be shown the door.

  2. Francis

    January 9, 2012 at 5:21 pm

    What a shame! that the CJ could not mention the name of a poor innocent victim in this case and offer before hand an apology on behave of the judiciary (veracity of the accusations notwithstanding) is shameful.An innocent Kenya is terrorized in broad-daylight by a senior member of the judiciary and all you do is talk about cmt? The fact that DCJ has allowed the matter to come to this stage is enough reason that she should have vacated office last week.Amb. Kiplagat was hounded out of office by NGO THUGS with unfounded accusations about things that he had nothing to do with-but a gun-welding  DCJ is in office? For FIDA- you can all go and buy a face-mask-you are a walking shame.You have shown your true colors-group of big-hotel eating SISTERS who have no room for the poor KERUBO.All you want are jobs for yourselves in the name of gender equality but not social equality/justice.You have used the name of poor women to enrich and secure favors for yourselves but care less about the poor women languishing in poverty in slums and villages across our country.The NGO big-mouths and talking-head media commentator dolls have all put their tails between their legs and left KERUBO to be terrorized and made fun of.I wrote on this forum that the talk about new constitution was all empty air driven by elites who wanted “PRESIDENTIAL POWERS DEVOLVED TO THEM” so that they can STICK THE BIG AND SMALL ONES TO KENYANS-I thought i was wrong!.I would rather we had one center of power so that many Kenyans do not have to go to college “TO KNOW PEOPLE- KUJUA WATU”. Today marks the darkest day of the new judiciary-WHAT A TRAGEDY-IF THE DCJ DID NOT OWN UP AND SAVE THE JUDICIARY THE SHAME THEN THATS THE END.    

  3. Maddo Wanyex

    January 10, 2012 at 6:43 am

    We all can feel the repercussions of gender equality

  4. Mwamko Mpya

    January 10, 2012 at 1:14 pm

    The DCJ saga has 4 elements: 1) VIP security 2) Competences of our Guards and Police 3) Resolution of issues

    I do not want to comment on the DCJ behaviour which is already under probe but it is important to note that security arrangements for our VIPs needs improvement; our guards and policemen need to be thoroughly trained; and as a nation, we need to train all citizens in resolution of issues without politicising them. Just relive this scenario: DCJ walks past a security desk, guard insists on screening, DCJ castigates her for not recognizing a VIP, she retorts that she does not care who the DCJ is and DCJ responds in a manner(s) that are now under probe.

    Really, the guard was doing her job but the moment the DCJ castigated her for not recognizing the DCJ, she should have changed tact and at worst referred the issue to superiors. The DCJ should have left her guard and and driver to resolve the issue with the guard and at worst management of the establshment. VIPs while in public places should not be far from their security details.

    These are pointers to the casual manner in which we handle our security. No wonder the country suffers security alerts every now and then. Surely, A COUNTRY THAT CANNOT ENSURE SECURITY FOR ITS DCJ IS A COUNTRY THAT CANNOT ENSURE DECENT SECURITY FOR ITS VISITORS, TOURISTS AND INVESTORS.
    My question is: What was the role of the VIP protection unit in this saga? The DCJ and the Village Market guard
    found themselves victims of GLARING OMMISSIONS by the country’s security organs.

    As we change our governance structure, the role of security organs in ensuring security for the people who have the heavy responsibility of implementing reforms and the new constitition must be called into question. Kenyans are not interested in Ommisions and Commissions regarding security of all and for public officials.

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