Tag Archives: kalou

Arsenal set to loan Marouane Chamakh out to West Ham

Hammers poised to take Chamakh from Arsenal in loan deal

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UPDATED:

22:29 GMT, 21 December 2012

West Ham are in talks over a loan deal for Arsenal striker Marouane Chamakh.

Arsene Wenger will pay a cut of the Moroccan’s 65,000-a-week wages.

On his way Chamakh could soon be leaving Arsenal

On his way Chamakh could soon be leaving Arsenal

Chamakh has come under fire from Arsenal fans for his performances.

He missed a penalty as the Gunners embarrassingly lost to League Two Bradford in the League Cup last week.

Hammers boss Sam Allardyce also wants ex-Chelsea star Salomon Kalou on loan.

England 54 Fiji 12: Stuart Lancaster"s side rue missed chances

England 54 Fiji 12: Lancaster's young side in control but rue missed chances

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UPDATED:

00:04 GMT, 11 November 2012

England may have run up a half-century of points with seven tries and a record winning margin against Fiji, but this was no brave new dawn for Stuart Lancaster's side.

The reality is that while England had valid reasons for producing a rusty performance – injuries ruling out half-a-dozen first-choice players – this was as poor a Fiji team as they have fielded in five meetings with their hosts.

Two-try hero: Manu Tuilagi went over twice at Twickenham

Two-try hero: Manu Tuilagi went over twice at Twickenham

Match facts

England: Goode; Sharples, Tuilagi, Barritt, Monye; Flood, Care; Marler, Youngs, Cole, Parling, Palmer, Johnson, Robshaw, Waldron.

Replacements: Paice (65 for T Youngs), Wilson (58 for Cole), Vunipola (46 for Marler), Launchbury (50 for Palmer), Tom Wood (59 for Johnson), B Youngs (58 for Care), Farrell (59 for Flood), Brown (59 for Monye)

Try: Sharples 2, Monye, Johnson, Tuilagi 2. Cons: Flood 4, Farrell. Pens: Flood 3.

Sin bin: Care (10).

Fiji: Koniferedi; Wara, Goneva, Naqelevuki, Votu; Talebula, Matawalu; Makutu, Veikoso, Manu, Nakawara, Ratuniyarawa, Naikatani, Ravulo, Qera.

Replacements: Naureure (47 for Veikoso), Samoca (not used), Saulo (67 for Manu), Kalou (73 for Ratuniyarawa), Ratuva (52 for Naikatini), Bola (not used), Matavesi (40 for Koniferedi), Fatiaki (67 for Wara).

Try: Matawalu, Kalou Con: Matavesi.

Sin bin: Manu (29).

Referee: G Jackson (New Zealand).

That may not be surprising, given
Fiji's absentees after sudden and convenient declarations of allegiance
to France, as well as injuries and visa problems, all of which resulted
in a team ranked 14th in the world having just one full training session
before this encounter at Twickenham.

But despite being ranked 10 places above them, England botched at least seven try-scoring opportunities.

Three were disallowed rightly by the
busy Television Match Official, Gareth Simmonds, two more were held up
and two thrown away by loose final passes.

Throw in the fact that it took 20
minutes before England took the lead – a Toby Flood penalty – in a first
quarter dominated by the South Sea islanders, who also missed two
penalties and almost scored two tries, and Lancaster and his coaching
team will have much to analyse in the cold light of day.

Does this all seem a little churlish
Fiji are an unknown quantity to an England team who last played them in
1999, while England, with three Test debutants in the match-day 23,
needed a good run-out before they take on the big three of Australia,
South Africa and New Zealand.

Maybe.

Make mine a double: Charlie Sharples scored two tries also

Make mine a double: Charlie Sharples scored two tries also

Versatlie: Man-of-the-match Alex Goode operated as a makeshift scrum-half with Danny Care sin-binned

Versatlie: Man-of-the-match Alex Goode operated as a makeshift scrum-half with Danny Care sin-binned

But the Wallabies next Saturday, let
alone the Springboks and All Blacks, will not give England anything
like the freedom afforded them by a Fiji team who ran out of steam well
before the final whistle.

England will need to convert their
chances if they are to come close to fulfilling Lancaster's wish of four
straight autumn wins.

So what are the positives

All 23 of the squad played at least a part, including reserve prop Mako Vunipola and reserve lock Joe Launchbury.

Motoring nicely: Ugo Monye's try pushed the score onto 25-0

Motoring nicely: Ugo Monye's try pushed the score onto 25-0

New hooker Tom Youngs made a more
than decent first start, carrying the ball with zest and producing a
flawless display at the lineout.

Flood, the most experienced player
in this callow England side with 51 caps to his name, kicked seven from
eight as he helped himself to 17 points; Charlie Sharples was within an
inch of scoring a hat-trick of tries, which will make the team selection
for Australia next week interesting with the suspended Chris Ashton
available; and Alex Goode followed up his confident first start as
full-back in Port Elizabeth five months ago with a man-of-the-match
performance.

Up and running: Charlie Sharples scored the opening try

Up and running: Charlie Sharples scored the opening try

High riser: Geoff Parling holds on as England win a lineout

High riser: Geoff Parling holds on as England win a lineout

The injured Ben Foden may have to start thinking about playing on the wing for England when he returns for the Six Nations.

When Flood kicked the first points
of the game, the decision to go for goal was received with the odd boo
by an already restless crowd.

/11/10/article-2230983-15F42C57000005DC-374_634x412.jpg” width=”634″ height=”412″ alt=”Tough to stop: Thomas Waldrom is tackled by Vereniki Goneva” class=”blkBorder” />

Tough to stop: Thomas Waldrom is tackled by Vereniki Goneva

Flood converted, then added a penalty, and after having barely been in the game for 26 minutes, England were 13 points up.

It should have been 20 seven minutes from the break, but Joe Marler's final pass to Brad Barritt missed his man.

Three minutes later, the prop made
some amends by playing his part in forcing referee Glen Jackson, the
former Saracens stand-off making his Test debut in charge, to award
England a penalty try after the increasingly dominant English pack
forced their counterparts to repeatedly collapse under their own posts.

When Ugo Monye then burst over
unopposed in the corner after Goode's quick tap in the dying seconds, a
half-time lead of 25-0 appeared about par, and with Flood adding a
penalty, Tom Johnson scoring his first Test try in his first home start
in the corner after receiving from the unselfish Chris Robshaw and Flood
converting inside 50 minutes, a cricket score was on the cards.

This did not quite materialise as England, in fairness, rang the changes.

Fiji scrum-half Nikola Matawalu
grabbed a try back, and although Sharples scored his second from a long,
floated pass from Flood and Manu Tuilagi bulldozed his way to two late
tries, it was Fiji who had the last word when replacement lock Seko
Kalou burrowed his way under the English posts.

Roman Abramovich team-talk inspired Chelsea to Champions League – Salomon Kalou

Revealed: The team-talk from Roman that inspired Chelsea to European glory

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UPDATED:

21:30 GMT, 20 October 2012

You can picture the scene: John Terry, Frank Lampard, Ashley Cole and Didier Drogba are sat in the team room, waiting for the owner, Roman Abramovich, to address his employees.

You can imagine one or two players might shift nervously in their seats as the Russian oligarch reminds them that his money brought them to the club and that he can just as easily dispense with them.

For six years, Salomon Kalou was an integral part of the squad and experienced almost all football has to offer, from the Champions League victory to the seven different managers; from the Premier League and FA Cup double to the fall-out from John Terry racially abusing an opponent.

Inspiring: Roman Abramovich spoke to the players before Chelsea's Munich triumph

Inspiring: Roman Abramovich spoke to the players before Chelsea's Munich triumph

But still, it is those team meetings with Abramovich that stand out most when Kalou, now in France at Lille, talks about his time at Chelsea.

‘That’s the role of the owner, to remind everyone that the only boss is him and we should be working for the best interests of the club — not individuals,’ says Kalou.

‘Roman always reminds us very well and it works every time. I remember he came twice to tell us — once in Carlo Ancelotti’s time and we won the double. And he came again after AVB [Andre Villas-Boas’s sacking] and we won the Champions League.’

They cannot have been comfortable encounters but Kalou insists the players were not fearful of Abramovich. ‘No,’ he says. ‘We weren’t scared. But he doesn’t speak all the time, so when he does you listen.

‘Maybe if he backs off, it won’t work. Because when you invest in ideas, you really want them to work. Sometimes you have to remind people, “I’m the one doing that. You have to do it the right way”. It’s important because people seem to forget when it’s difficult [and say], “Oh, Chelsea have been here for eight years. We don’t have to work hard, we will just play and I’m going to be playing anyway”.

‘So, if the manager doesn’t, it’s important for someone to remind the players, “You have been here for six years but I can change the team any time I want, so you better get back to the pitch and do the job right”.

‘I think, if you see the results, it is positive. He has the idea, “I want to run this club, I want things to work”. He wanted to win the Champions League and then he won it, so it was worth it — doing all that.’

Worth it, perhaps, but it is still not conventional man-management. /10/20/article-2220733-13323399000005DC-376_634x416.jpg” width=”634″ height=”416″ alt=”Parade: Chelsea players with their trophies from what was an amazing season” class=”blkBorder” />

Parade: Chelsea players with their trophies from what was an amazing season

‘Every time I got to the level where I had convinced a manager that I should be in the team and play regularly, the manager was sacked. So you have to go back to the beginning because you don’t have the stature that some players have when a new manager comes in [and] automatically he knows that he is going to need them to be in the team because they are the main players.

New role: Salomon Kalou is now one of the more experienced players

New role: Salomon Kalou is now one of the more experienced players

‘So you have to convince the new manager
and when you convince him at the end, he gets sacked again. You go
through the same emotion every season and you think it’s never going to
happen.’

Not so now. At Lille, French champions two years ago in a team in which Eden Hazard, Gervinho and Yohan Cabaye played, Kalou will be one of the senior players when they take on Bayern Munich in the Champions League this week. ‘I can say that my stature as a player has changed,’ he says.

‘I’m seen as more of a main player than I was at Chelsea. The players and coaches and fans expect me to bring that little something that can change the game. I have more responsibility.’

The almost constant state of crisis
management at Chelsea, from the air-rifle shooting in the dressing room
to managerial sackings, at least forged a team dynamic, according to
Kalou.

‘We constantly had
to cope with that and that made us stronger,’ he says. ‘If you are
talking mentally, the strongest team in England for the last six years
have always been Chelsea.

‘Any
issue that happened, we’re always going to talk about it. Because we
knew each other for so long and we have that relationship among each
other where we joke about stuff, we talk about everything. So we would
never get disturbed by any kind of situation.’

Nevertheless,
one issue remained undiscussed: Terry’s racial insult, directed at
Anton Ferdinand a year ago. Kalou says that was because he trusted
Terry. ‘Do I think he’s a racist No, because I never have that
experience with him personally,’ he adds.

‘When we saw it, we didn’t feel it
personally. We never went, “Oh, wow. Why did he say that” We never
talked about it because, for us, we judge him as he acted with us. I see
the person I go training with every day and how he treated me. I never
had a problem with him like that.’

Try and try again: Kalou had to make his mark on every new Chelsea manager

Try and try again: Kalou had to make his mark on every new Chelsea manager

Kalou’s only experience of racism, he says, was in Holland as a young player from some opposition fans. ‘When we played against other teams sometimes, we got it from the fans, they bully you and stuff. But in England, never.’

In contrast, life at Lille must seem sedate. The manager, Rudi Garcia, has been in place for four years; there are no race rows brewing and no youth team players have been shot in the dressing room.

‘That’s what makes Chelsea, Chelsea,’ says Kalou. ‘There is always something going on. If it isn’t on the pitch, it is off the pitch.’

For now, though, the soap opera is over and Kalou can focus on the football.

Salomon Kalou set to sign for Lille

Kalou in Lille for medical as former Chelsea forward nears French move

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UPDATED:

09:44 GMT, 7 July 2012

Former Chelsea star Salomon Kalou is on the verge of completing a move to Ligue 1 side Lille.

The Champions League winner was released by the London club this month following the expiry of his contract, bringing to an end a six-year spell at Stamford Bridge.

french fancy: Kalou is set to join Lille

French fancy: Kalou is set to join Lille

And the 26-year-old has wasted no time in securing his future by agreeing a four-year deal with the 2010-11 French league winners.

The Ivorian international arrived in the northern French city to thrash out terms with he club, who have won the race for his signature ahead of several other suitors.

Kalou is undergoing a medical on Saturday afternoon, with the deal expected to be confirmed within a day or two of its completion, according to French newspaper La Voix du Nord.

Newcastle enter race to sign Salomon Kalou

Newcastle enter race to sign freebie former Chelsea forward Kalou

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UPDATED:

06:44 GMT, 8 June 2012

Newcastle are weighing up a move for former Chelsea forward Salomon Kalou.

Boss Alan Pardew is looking to bolster his impressive attack, which already includes the likes of Papiss Cisse, Demba Ba and Hatem Ben Arfa.

The Ivory Coast international is a free agent after leaving the Blues following their Champions League Final triumph.

Up for grabs: Salomon Kalou (right) in action for Ivory Coast last week

Up for grabs: Salomon Kalou (right) in action for Ivory Coast last week

German side Schalke remain favourites to sign Kalou despite interest from Arsenal and his former side Feyenoord. But the Magpies have now entered the race, according to talkSPORT.

The 26-year-old made more than 250 appearances, including a start in Chelsea's Champions League final victory against Bayern Munich, and scored 60 goals for the Blues.

Chelsea forward Salomon Kalou ready to sign for Schalke

Chelsea forward Kalou poised to join German side Schalke despite Arsenal interest

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UPDATED:

05:33 GMT, 29 May 2012

Chelsea forward Salomon Kalou is ready to turn his back on the Premier League and sign for German side Schalke.

The Ivory Coast international became a free agent after the Blues' Champions League Final triumph.

Last hurrah: Salomon Kalou set to leave Chelsea after Champions League triumph

Last hurrah: Salomon Kalou set to leave Chelsea after Champions League triumph

And Schalke are favourites to sign Kalou despite interest from Arsenal and his former side Feyenoord, reports the Daily Mirror.

The 26-year-old made more than 250 appearances, including a start in Chelsea's Champions League final victory against Bayern Munich, and scored 60 goals for the Blues.

Frank Lampard to sign new Chelsea contract

EXCLUSIVE: Lampard lining up a new Blue deal as Chelsea stick with old guard

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UPDATED:

00:00 GMT, 24 May 2012

Frank Lampard will finish his career at Chelsea with the club offering him a new deal this summer.

Chief executive Ron Gourlay wants Lampard, Michael Essien and Florent Malouda signed on long-term deals by mid-September.

Sealed with a kiss: Lampard will sign a new contract at Chelsea

Sealed with a kiss: Lampard will sign a new contract at Chelsea

Gourlay will also announce on Thursday that he has released Champions League heroes Jose Bosingwa and Salomon Kalou.

With Didier Drogba quitting Stamford Bridge, it means three of the starting team for last Saturday’s European Cup win are looking for new clubs.

In Kalou’s case, Chelsea may still be willing to negotiate a new deal if their next manager wants him.

Lampard, 33, has a year left on his current 150,000-a-week deal, but can expect to move up 25,000 a week into Fernando Torres’s pay scale.

Released: Bosingwa (left) and Kalou (right) both started the Champions League final in Munich

Released: Bosingwa (left) and Kalou (right) both started the Champions League final in Munich

Released: Bosingwa (left) and Kalou (right) started the Champions League final

Torres was given the complete backing of Chelsea’s board as Gourlay confirmed the striker will be the main focal point of their attack next season. Gourlay said: ‘I think you will see Torres scoring many goals for Chelsea next season.

‘We’ve just won the Champions League and Fernando played his part in that – he’s an important player.

‘Next season we may have two big-name centre forwards scoring 25 to 30 goals.’

Chelsea still hope Eden Hazard will sign from Lille and, according to a report in South America on Wednesday, they have had a 32million bid for Sao Paulo midfielder Lucas Moura, 19, rejected.

Chelsea win Champions League: Petr Cech saves the day

How it was Cech mate: Blues' No 1 reveals his logic that saved the day in Munich

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UPDATED:

21:57 GMT, 20 May 2012

Only when listening to Petr Cech at Munich’s Mandarin Oriental Hotel on Sunday morning did it become clear just how brilliant a performance he delivered on Saturday night.

Only then did it become clear that Chelsea’s victory was a victory for intelligence and logic as well as courage, determination and athleticism; for meticulous preparation on the part of Roberto Di Matteo as well as guts and guile and the finishing of the irrepressible Didier Drogba.

Cech sat with a small gathering of invited journalists, his winner’s medal hanging from his neck and the European Cup positioned on the carpet in front of him, and explained how he made the first of three penalty saves.

First up: Petr Cech saves Arjen Robben's penalty in extra time

First up: Petr Cech saves Arjen Robben's penalty in extra time

MATCH FACTS

Bayern Munich: Neuer, Lahm, Boateng, Tymoschuk, Contento, Schweinsteiger, Kroos, Robben, Muller (Van Buyten 86), Ribery (Olic 97), Gomez. Subs not used: Butt, Petersen, Rafinha, Usami, Pranjic.

Booked: Schweinsteiger.

Scorer: Muller 83.

Chelsea: Cech, Bosingwa, Luiz, Cahill, Cole, Kalou (Torres 84), Mikel, Lampard, Bertrand (Malouda 73), Mata, Drogba. Subs not used: Turnbull, Essien, Romeu, Ferreira, Sturridge.

Booked: Cole, Luiz, Drogba, Torres.

Scorer: Drogba 88.

Referee: Pedro Proenca (Portugal).

Attendance: 69,901.

It was perhaps the most crucial, awarded to Bayern Munich in the fifth minute of extra time after Drogba had foolishly felled Franck Ribery. John Mikel Obi played his part, mischievously informing Arjen Robben that his former Chelsea colleague would know exactly what he intended to do; that Cech would make the save.

Cech, it turns out, was not quite that confident, but the thought process that led to him choosing the right way — a thought process built on a study of the Holland winger’s technique — remains incredibly impressive.

‘Robben always shoots different ways,’ said Cech. ‘There’s no pattern in his penalties. So I didn’t know what to do with him. Half he shoots to the right, half to the left. No pattern whatsoever. He even runs up the same way to the ball.

But when you’re tired, when you’ve played for 95 minutes, players choose power rather than technique, rather than placing it. I thought he’d smash it somewhere near the corner and hope it would go through. He’s left-footed. I’m left-footed, and I thought if it was me I’d shoot across, left to right. Which is why I went to my left.’

Second helpings: Cech was spot on again to save from Ivica Olic in the penalty shoot-out

Second helpings: Cech was spot on again to save from Ivica Olic in the penalty shoot-out

This is a guy who mastered Spanish in a month, his fourth language. For this Champions League final he mastered Bayern’s penalty takers in two hours, destroying the myth that the Germans always win these shootouts.

Even on the eve of the game Jupp Heynckes was pointing to the superior mental strength of his compatriots when it comes to scoring from 12 yards. Cech and Chelsea’s penalty takers took a sledgehammer to that theory. Not least with the saves to deny Ivica Olic and Bastian Schweinsteiger.

That's the set: Cech got a hand to Bastian Schweinsteiger's penalty to push it on to the post

That's the set: Cech got a hand to Bastian Schweinsteiger's penalty to push it on to the post

How much did Cech know about Bayern’s chosen five on Saturday night ‘Quite a bit because I went six times the right way for the six penalties,’ he said with a wry smile. ‘I either guessed pretty well or I was ready to guess pretty well. I’d seen all the Bayern penalties since 2007. It took me about two hours to go through them all on a DVD, on the flight over. The coaching staff studied them too and we took notes. When it came to the shootout I then said, “Guys, the notes” But Hilario said, “You don’t need the notes, you’ll save everything”.

‘Mario Gomez hit the best penalty. I got close to Manuel Neuer’s. But I’d gone the right way each time and it would have been impossible to have kept guessing right and not saved one. That’s what happened. I got a touch on Schweinsteiger’s, too.’

Cech mate: Chelsea's goalkeeper celebrates with the Champions League trophy in Munich

Cech mate: Chelsea's goalkeeper celebrates with the Champions League trophy in Munich

It was astonishing, not least the way Bayern contrived to lose the initiative three times. They tossed it away when they allowed Drogba to cancel out Thomas Muller’s 83rd-minute opener with a thumping header of his own two minutes from time; again when Robben missed his penalty and lastly when the shootout was 3-1 in their favour.

They also squandered the considerable advantage that came with being at home. A neutral venue Try telling that to Chelsea when three-quarters of the ground was a sea of red. In every respect it was like a home game for Bayern, even down to the tactics of the teams. Bayern attacked and for the most part dominated, unleashing 35 attempts to Chelsea’s nine and earning 20 corners to Chelsea’s one. But it was from that one corner, delivered by Juan Mata, that Drogba equalised.

The one that got away: Cech was beaten by Thomas Muller's penalty but it proved to count for nothing

The one that got away: Cech was beaten by Thomas Muller's penalty but it proved to count for nothing

In midfield, in particular, Bayern were excellent, especially Toni Kroos and Schweinsteiger. What a player Kroos is. But Schweinsteiger could not watch when Robben took that 95th-minute penalty and the fear of losing a third title this season clearly got the better of him when it came to taking Bayern’s final spot-kick.

Under the guidance of Di Matteo, super cool until he needed to deliver a stirring speech to his shattered players at the end of normal time, Chelsea displayed no such nerves.

Winner: Didier Drogba scored the penalty that won Chelsea the trophy

Winner: Didier Drogba scored the penalty that won Chelsea the trophy

Frank Lampard and Mikel worked tirelessly in midfield, while David Luiz and Gary Cahill were magnificent for two centre halves returning from injury, keeping Gomez quiet with impressive ease.

Luiz not only confirmed he had suffered a setback with his hamstring injury on the Thursday but revealed it went again after 20 minutes of this game. ‘I told myself I’d play with the heart rather than the body,’ he said afterwards.

In Cech’s words, ‘Cahill and Luiz were amazing’, and never more so than when Luiz took that huge run- up before thumping home his shootout penalty following Mata’s opening miss.

Big winners: Chelsea celebrate their Champions League triumph in Munich

Big winners: Chelsea celebrate their Champions League triumph in Munich

Ashley Cole was also immense, at left back and when it came to burying his penalty at a Bayern end that became a wall of sound designed to intimidate the Chelsea players who had to make that lonely walk from the halfway line.

To beat Bayern in the manner they did, to exorcise the ghosts of Chelsea’s Champions League past, to heal the scars of Moscow, was a credit to all those involved. From Di Matteo to the Champions League debutant, Ryan Bertrand.

Home comforts: Chelsea paraded the Champions League trophy in London on Sunday

Home comforts: Chelsea paraded the Champions League trophy in London on Sunday

In Drogba, though, they had their big-match winner; the scorer of nine goals in nine cup finals and someone, surely, Roman Abramovich has to keep at Stamford Bridge.

Where John Terry had failed in 2008, Drogba succeeded. ‘I was confident,’ he said as he recalled the thoughts passing through his mind as he marched towards the penalty spot. ‘I wanted to score for Petr Cech, for my team-mates, I just wanted to make Chelsea smile.’

He certainly succeeded.

Salomon Kalou wants Feyenoord return

Kalou issues come and get me plea to Feyenoord as Chelsea forward plans summer exit

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UPDATED:

05:30 GMT, 18 May 2012

Salomon Kalou has issued a plea to his former club Feyenoord that he sees his future in the Eredivisie after his Chelsea contract expires this summer.

Besiktas and Tottenham had been in the frame to capture the free agent in the coming weeks, but the Ivory Coast international wants to head back to Holland.

However, Kalou wants to wait until after Saturday's Champions League final before considering any deal.

Last hurrah: Saturday's final looks set to be Kalou's last game for Chelsea

Last hurrah: Saturday's final looks set to be Kalou's last game for Chelsea

Kalou – who spent three years with the Rotterdam club – said: 'Feyenoord can call me any time – they are the first name on my list.

'Let me win the Champions League final and then I will think about Feyenoord. Yes, I’m serious!'

Out on a high: Kalou is eyeing his second trophy this season

Out on a high: Kalou is eyeing his second trophy this season

Liverpool v Chelsea live

PREMIER LEAGUE LIVE: Liverpool v Chelsea – follow the action from Anfield as it happens

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UPDATED:

19:03 GMT, 8 May 2012

Follow Sportsmail's coverage of the Barclays Premier League as Liverpool look to extract revenge on Chelsea at Anfield following their FA Cup final defeat to the Blues. Chelsea must win to have any chance of securing a Champions League spot through their league placing, but the Reds also need a result to stay within touch of Merseyside rivals Everton in the table. Send me your thoughts on the action at [email protected] or contact me on twitter @Ripinho

Liverpool 0-0 Chelsea (8pm)

Click here for the live goals as they go in

Liverpool: Reina, Johnson, Carragher,
Skrtel, Agger, Downing, Henderson, Shelvey, Maxi, Suarez, Carroll.
Subs: Doni, Coates, Kuyt, Spearing, Sterling, Kelly, Bellamy.

Chelsea: Turnbull, Ferreira,
Ivanovic, Terry, Bertrand, Essien, Romeu, Ramires, Sturridge, Malouda,
Torres.
Subs: Hilario, Cole, Lampard, Mata, Lukaku, Kalou, Hutchinson.

Referee: Kevin Friend (Leicestershire)

Click here for the live Premier League table

3min: The Reds looking confident early on as Stewart Downing sends a cross to the far post, but Luis Suarez in the centre of the box is penalised for giving away a foul.

Kick-off: Away we go folks.

19.54: The teams are now on the pitch, needless to say that after Torres' name was read out – he was booed.

19.51: For Chelsea, a draw will not do. They must win to have any chance overhauling fourth-placed Tottenham and secure a Champions League place via the Premier League.

Failing that they could just win the tournament on May 19 to spare the bother of having to qualify – a bit risky to bank on though.

19.48: So what's on the line in this game Liverpool sit ninth in the Premier League, three points behind Fulham.

Should they finish in that position, it will be their worst league placing since being promoted to the top flight back in 1962.

Defeat tonight would also mean they would end up lower than seventh-placed Everton for just the second time in Premier League history.

19.45: A worthy plug to a match sponsor is needed tonight I feel.

Liverpool will be without their usual Standard Chartered (no not them!) logos this evening and instead will display a message on the front of their kit that says 'Seeing is Believing.'

It's all in aid of drumming up awareness for a blindness charity – good on them.

19.42: And some more on Turnbull's tales from InfostradaLive:

Ross Turnbull plays his first PL match since 21 March 2010 when he played for Chelsea at Blackburn (1-1). This season he has played three Carling Cup matches.

19.41: From InfostradaLive, who you can follow here on Twitter:

Liverpool are looking to win four league matches in a row against Chelsea for the first time since a five-match winning streak from 1972-74.

19.38: Big night for Ross Turnbull then. This is his first Premier League game for over two years.

The 27-year-old will never be in a position to fight Cech for a place in the team but here is an opportunity to show us what he can do. I've always had him down as an accident waiting to happen.

19.35: Torres, Luis Suarez and Carroll – that adds up to over 107million worth of striking talent on the pitch tonight….I don't know about you but I demand a 4-3 scoreline.

19.32: Former Kop idol Fernando Torres returns to Anfield for the first time since his 50million departure in January last year as one of eight changes for Chelsea.

With his team the outsiders to finish in the top four, manager Roberto di Matteo makes numerous alterations to the team which won the FA Cup against the Reds on Saturday as this month's Champions League final against Bayern Munich is his primary focus.

Liverpool make four changes from their team, with captain Steven Gerrard absent from the squad but Wembley goalscorer Andy Carroll returns to the line-up.

19.27: Slightly surprised there is no Petr Cech in goal for Chelsea this evening Turns out he is being rested – the Blues have some sort of Champions League final to play on Saturday week.

19.22: Full line-ups from Anfield:

Liverpool v Chelsea
Liverpool: Reina, Johnson, Carragher, Skrtel, Agger, Downing, Henderson, Shelvey, Maxi, Suarez, Carroll. Subs: Doni, Coates, Kuyt, Spearing, Sterling, Kelly, Bellamy.

Chelsea: Turnbull, Ferreira, Ivanovic, Terry, Bertrand, Essien, Romeu, Ramires, Sturridge, Malouda, Torres. Subs: Hilario, Cole, Lampard, Mata, Lukaku, Kalou, Hutchinson.

Referee: Kevin Friend (Leicestershire)

19.17: Don't let that stat put you off though. The FA Cup final three days ago may have taken a while to get going but once Andy Carroll came on, the game took off like a rocket.

Going by FA Cup finals in the last 20 years that's no easy feat, and of course catalyst Carroll starts this evening.

19.14: From OptaJoe:

126 – Liverpool have had fewer shots on target against them than any other team in the PL this season. Tight.

19.11: Chelsea starting XI:

Turnbull, Ferreira, Ivanovic, Terry, Bertrand, Essien, Romeu, Malouda, Ramires, Torres, Sturridge.

19.08: As you can see from the comments section that line-up makes fine reading for Stephen from St. Ives.

19.05: Liverpool starting XI:

Reina, Carragher, Agger, Skrtel, Johnson, Henderson, Maxi, Downing, Shelvey, Suarez, Carroll.

19.00: Talk about this being after the Lord Mayor's show. Three days on from the FA Cup final, Liverpool clash with Chelsea again. Only this time there is no cups on the line, just three points.

Albeit a very important three points…team news on the way

Rematch: Liverpool host Chelsea just three days after losing the FA Cup final to the Blues 2-1

Rematch: Liverpool host Chelsea just three days after losing the FA Cup final to the Blues 2-1