Sterling finish earns praise


Published: Saturday 27th December 2014 by The News Editor

Comments (0)

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers praised match-winner Raheem Sterling for improving the area of his game which has brought most criticism.

The England international found his finishing under the spotlight after missing a host of chances against Manchester United in his new striking role a fortnight ago but displayed the composure to score the only goal in the victory at Burnley on Boxing Day.

“It showed what a great learner he is,” said the Liverpool manager.

“He is in a position now where he will receive a lot of opportunities in that kind of situation because of his pace.

“His pace will take him away from anyone and since that (United) game he has gone away with the coaches and worked on that type of finish, both left side and right side.

“He showed great composure and a great ability to learn, to beat the keeper and finished it really well.

“His development and ability to want to be better has got us the three points.”

Rodgers also had praise for goalkeeper Simon Mignolet despite a unexpected and less-than-convincing return to the side when he came on for the injured Brad Jones after just 15 minutes at Turf Moor.

“I thought he did well. There was just the once when the ball went over the line (wide of goal, from a Mamadou Sakho backpass),” he added.

“He has worked hard since he has come out of the team. He has kept a clean sheet and that was important.”

Rodgers admitted he may look at an emergency loan after Jones’s injury but it seems in the short term he will call on the youth team.

“We will just look at that. If he is missing out, we have young Danny Ward and he will come on to the bench,” he said.

Clarets boss Sean Dyche felt his side – who almost took the lead when Danny Ings hit the post in a one-sided first half – were robbed of at least a point by the visitors.

“We had our pocket pinched with how they got away with a win,” he said.

“If not totally dominant, we were very dominant and yet again it is another marker.

“But the challenge is not just to be excellent but to win.”

While defeat saw the Clarets drop to next-bottom, the welcome sight of last season’s 20-goal striker Sam Vokes returning for his first appearance since March after a cruciate knee ligament injury gives them hope going into the new year.

“It is terrific. You can see by the reaction of the fans,” said Dyche.

“It is only another step on his journey to being fit. He is not there yet.

“He was ready to be involved in the squad but not quite ready to start, although he’s not a million miles off.”

Published: Saturday 27th December 2014 by The News Editor

Comments (0)

Local business search