Defender Andrew Robertson has signed a new "long-term contract" with Liverpool, the Premier League leaders have announced.

Defender Andrew Robertson has signed a new "long-term contract" with Liverpool, the Premier League leaders have announced.

Fabinho applauded Jurgen Klopp's man-management style, convinced the Liverpool boss knows what is best for his players' development.

Klopp has earned wide acclaim ever since joining Liverpool in 2015, with the ex-Borussia Dortmund boss introducing an entertaining brand of football and overseeing a notable improvement in the team who lead Premier League champions Manchester City by four points at the top of the table.

He has also been praised for his impact on the players themselves, with Klopp putting trust in youngsters and ensuring others have improved.

Fabinho is one of those to have made significant strides, as the Brazilian struggled to get in Liverpool's team initially after joining from Monaco for a reported £44million in July.

There were reservations about Fabinho's positioning and suitability to Klopp's system, but he has become a more regular starter in recent months and he saluted his manager's influence.

"The relationship with the coach is good," the midfielder told Liverpool's official website. "He has a different way of speaking to each player.

"He understands things about us, things we need to improve on. He'll tell you what he wants you to do on the pitch concerning movement so that when we're on the pitch we understand the best options for us. The relationship I have with him is very good."

With Liverpool enduring something of a defensive injury crisis, Fabinho had to fill in at centre-back in Saturday's 1-0 win at Brighton and Hove Albion and he felt comfortable there.

"I'd already played the previous game as a centre-back against Wolves," he added, referring to the Reds' 2-1 defeat in the third round of the FA Cup. "I think it went well, I had a good understanding with Ki-Jana Hoever [against Wolves], the communication was good.

"Regarding positioning, I improved throughout the game in this aspect. I did well, and in the last game against Brighton, I think I played well.

"Playing alongside [Virgil] Van Dijk helped, he's really vocal, he guided us. He helped me a lot. I had good communication with Trent [Alexander-Arnold] and also with Hendo [Jordan Henderson]; they were the players closest to me on the pitch.

"In general, I think it was a good game. In this position, which I haven't played in a lot, I think I adapted well. There are some aspects, such as positioning, that I need to improve on.

"If I were to play in this position more, I'd improve on these things, but that's natural."

Sadio Mane is convinced Liverpool will end their long wait for the title this season and is adamant they are not a team of "chokers".

Liverpool defender Trent Alexander-Arnold could be out for up to four weeks after suffering a knee injury at Brighton and Hove Albion. 

The England right-back turned his ankle in the warm-up for Liverpool's 1-0 victory at the Amex Stadium last Saturday.

Alexander-Arnold played with the help of strapping and painkillers, with Mohamed Salah's penalty briefly stretching Liverpool's lead at the top of the Premier League to seven points before Manchester City's 3-0 win over Wolves cut it back to four.

However, he now faces at least a couple of weeks on the sidelines, though with no surgery required he could make a quicker return as Liverpool monitor his progress.

The timing of the blow is particularly poor, with Joe Gomez and Joel Matip both out through injury and Nathaniel Clyne having been loaned to Bournemouth.

James Milner and Fabinho may have to move to right side of defence during his absence, which - if it lasts for four weeks - will see him miss Premier League games with Crystal Palace, Leicester City, West Ham and possibly Bournemouth.

Liverpool host Bayern Munich in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie on February 19, a fixture Alexander-Arnold should be fit for providing the timescale proves correct.

Meanwhile, midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum is a doubt for Saturday's visit of Palace because of a knee problem.


Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson backed Mohamed Salah and said the forward would only get better if criticism of him continued.

Salah has been accused of diving in recent weeks, including for a penalty that he converted in his team's 1-0 win over Brighton and Hove Albion on Saturday.

The Egypt international is enjoying another fine season, scoring 14 goals and providing seven assists in 22 Premier League games.

Henderson defended the 26-year-old and the Liverpool captain feels Salah will only lift if the criticism continues.

"He will do things that some fans might not see that often but they should enjoy him because he is world class," the midfielder told UK newspapers.

"It was a penalty, a clear penalty. There's nothing to talk about that.

"In terms of Mo, I would think away grounds would be appreciative of what they see. The things he does, I'm sure he is a joy to watch.

"If they try to put pressure on him, they will only make him better. It won't bother him. He's so strong, I know he is.

"The more people are against him, the more he will want to prove them wrong. I'm not worried about that. When he goes to away grounds, people should appreciate him. He will do things that people want to see."

Liverpool hold a four-point lead atop the Premier League and host Crystal Palace on Saturday.

Pep Guardiola wants his Manchester City players to ignore Liverpool's fixtures in the Premier League title race.

Liverpool full-back Andy Robertson defended Mohamed Salah, saying any accusations of diving aimed at the forward were "desperation".

Salah again came under fire after being fouled for a penalty, which he converted, in Saturday's 1-0 victory over Brighton and Hove Albion.

The Egypt star was similarly criticised following Liverpool's thrashing of Arsenal last month.

Robertson backed his team-mate and said the constant questions surrounding Salah were unfair.

"Every time it happens, we go back, everyone looks at the video, and you go, 'Well, it's not a dive'," Robertson told UK newspapers.

"He is not that sort of player, so how many times is it going to happen?

"I was at the edge of the box and it was a stonewaller. If people are starting to say Mo has gone down easily, it's not fair.

"The one against Arsenal, especially, he got clipped three times. They still appealed. It's a bit of desperation."

Salah's spot-kick sent Liverpool seven points clear at the top, although Manchester City can close that back to four with a win over Wolves on Monday.

The Harlem Globetrotters have responded to Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp after the German's assertion that his side should not aspire to be like the legendary basketball exhibition side.

Jurgen Klopp believes Fabinho's "defensive brain" allows him to slot into Liverpool's rearguard with no problem.

Injuries have left the Premier League leaders short at the back in recent weeks and Fabinho has been called upon to fill in at the centre of defence.

The Brazilian midfielder lined up alongside Virgil van Dijk as Liverpool claimed a 1-0 win at Brighton and Hove Albion on Saturday and put on an assured performance as Klopp's side kept a clean sheet.

And the German says having a player of Fabinho's versatility makes it easier to cope with injury crises.

"Fabinho is a brilliant player," said Klopp. "To have a good footballer in that position when you have the ball is great.

"It was not one attack after another, we had the ball most of the time.

"But Brighton tried to bring the long balls around Glenn Murray, like with Joe Gomez in the home game – but he did well in these situations as well.

"He has a defensive brain and can play in a lot of positions."

Mohamed Salah's penalty sealed the victory, restoring the Reds' seven-point margin at the summit. 

Trent Alexander-Arnold revealed the extent to which he patched himself up after turning an ankle during the warm-up for Liverpool's 1-0 win at Brighton and Hove Albion.

Mohamed Salah won and converted a 50th-minute penalty to get the Premier League leaders back to winning ways in the top flight following last week's loss at Manchester City.

Jurgen Klopp is already coping with a sizable list of defensive injuries – Fabinho was pressed into action as an emergency centre-back at the Amex Stadium – and was clearly worried when he saw Alexander-Arnold go to ground during the final stages of Liverpool's preparations.

"I have no idea [how serious the injury is], we have to figure it out now. It was a shock in that moment – probably the last situation of the warm-up," said Klopp, whose side moved seven points clear at the summit once more. 

"He is on the ground, he wants to play. Because he doesn't speak immediately that's not so good.

"We have to wait to see what it is now. But it was a brilliant decision of the doc and Trent. They told me he could play and he played well."

England right-back Alexander-Arnold presented his own prescription that Liverpool's medical staff were happy to go along with, allowing him to complete 90 minutes.

"I told the manger and the medical staff I needed a strapping and a few painkillers and I'd be good to go," he said.

"As the game goes on you forget about it."

Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson felt Alexander-Arnold's contribution to Liverpool's latest clean sheet spoke volumes of the 20-year-old's character.

"That's Trent all over – his mentality, he's a very mature and strong boy for his age," said Henderson.

"It's another good performance from him. It'll probably be sore in the morning but it shows the togetherness in the group.

"In the warm-up he was struggling but he forgot about it in the game and did his job."

Jurgen Klopp felt a newfound maturity in his Liverpool side helped the Premier League leaders return to winning ways at Brighton and Hove Albion.

Chris Hughton's impeccably well-drilled side remained on level terms at the break, with Liverpool looking to bounce back from their loss to title rivals Manchester City last week and subsequent FA Cup reverse at Wolves.

Mohamed Salah provided the crucial contribution in a 1-0 victory by winning and converting a 50th-minute penalty to re-establish a seven-point lead at the summit for the Reds, with Tottenham and City in action over the coming days.

"It was very hard earned and that's how it is. A massive, massive game," Klopp said. "Everyone knows how difficult it is to go to Brighton.

"You have to be creative against a really good organised side with the counter-attack threat in your mind – plus the long balls that are always 50 per cent situations.

"It was a really mature performance from my side. This season that is a new skill and we have to keep that.

"The second half was much better. We learned from the first half. So I like the performance.

"It's not an opera of football but it’s still a really nice song."

Klopp insisted that Liverpool's newly bolstered lead at the top of the table meant little as City and Tottenham prepare for respective matches against Wolves and Manchester United.

"It means nothing. We take all the points we can. We have 57 now – that's the situation and that's cool," he added.

"We all know the difference will be tomorrow and on Monday night. We can only win our games."

Pascal Gross brought down Salah for the decisive spot kick but then came closest to finding a Brighton equaliser and their manager Chris Hughton felt his team were worthy of a share of the spoils.

"We restricted them to minimal chances," he said. "Pascal Gross' chance is probably as good as any of theirs.

"On the balance of play I thought we deserved to get something from it.

"They've got lots of moments of real quality because of the players they've got and you have to match that. For the majority of the game we were able to do that.

"You can't restrict them to no chances because they have such quality. In the latter stages of the game we went for it and showed a real intent to get back on level terms."

Hughton added: "Sometimes you feel some of the decisions don't go your way and I felt today was one of those days. No malice towards the referee but I thought it favoured Liverpool today."

Mohamed Salah won and converted a decisive 50th-minute penalty as Liverpool returned to winning ways with a hard-fought 1-0 victory at Brighton and Hove Albion.

Title rivals Manchester City trimmed the gap at the summit to four points when they beat the Reds' 2-1 last week and a much-changed XI were then knocked out of the FA Cup by Wolves.

But Jurgen Klopp's men restored a seven-point advantage thanks to the excellent Salah, having bided their time in the face of an often-impeccable defensive display from Brighton.

City host Wolves on Monday, by which time Tottenham will have had the chance to conquer Manchester United and close to within six of Liverpool.

Fabinho was deployed as an emergency centre-back for the visitors and his raking pass allowed Andrew Robertson to deliver a teasing cross from the left, with Roberto Firmino unable to slide home.

Room for Liverpool's attacking players to operate between a compact Brighton defence and midfield was sparing, but Sadio Mane engineered some in the 27th minute for Trent Alexander-Arnold to whip into the box and Xherdan Shaqiri to glance just wide.

Jordan Henderson found space for Liverpool's next headed attempt as Lewis Dunk made the block.

Salah escaped the shackles to force a save from David Button early in the second half and a jinking dribble from the Egypt star moments later drew a clumsy foul from Pascal Gross.

Button guessed correctly but was beaten for power.

Fabinho's first significant piece of defensive work came before the hour when he blocked from Gross, while Alisson took no chances in pushing Jurgen Locadia's speculative attempt around the post.

Georginio Wijnaldum lashed just wide 10 minutes from time and Salah uncharacteristically missed from close range when set up by substitute James Milner, but his earlier intervention proved to be enough.


What does it mean? Wobble ends for Klopp's men

Losing football matches can sometimes become a habit as tricky to shake as the winning addiction Liverpool operated with during the second half of 2018. The cup loss at Wolves on the back of their reverse at City is set to be a footnote in the Reds' season, but it would only have been human to feel nerves when this game was goalless at the interval. But they can relax again, for now, in the knowledge that City lost twice in December when they played later in the matchweek than Liverpool.

Salah lifts Liverpool with second-half salvo

Brighton's faultless defensive organisation got them through the first half with relatively few worries. At that point, Salah decided to take matters into his own hands. In the period immediately after the break – either side of winning and netting the game-breaking penalty – the superstar forward dropped deep and roved, breaking lines and Albion's otherwise unwavering concentration. He elevated himself above everyone else on the field to get Liverpool's title charge back on track.

Lumbering Locadia blunts Brighton attack

Chris Hughton's ploy of targeting the right-hand side of Liverpool's defence – where Alexander-Arnold appeared short of full fitness outside Fabinho – might have borne fruit had Locadia displayed a surer touch and avoided straying offside at untimely moments. If two goals in as many games after Christmas were a couple of steps forward for the ex-PSV forward, this outing was one backwards.

What's next?

Liverpool welcome Crystal Palace and their former boss Roy Hodgson to Anfield next weekend, when Brighton face another tough test away at Manchester United.

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp insisted Adam Lallana still had a role to play for the Premier League leaders despite the midfielder's injury woes.

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp celebrated "the icing on the cake" after he and Virgil van Dijk won the Premier League's monthly awards for a flawless December.

The league-leading Reds won seven games from seven for the month as they built a seven-point advantage over champions Manchester City at the end of the calendar year.

City subsequently began 2019 by beating Liverpool to trim that lead, but Manager of the Month Klopp was still able to reflect on a superb month as he collected his award on Friday.

"It's nice, the icing on the cake," he said. "It was a very successful but difficult month.

"Each game felt like the most important one of the season. It was unbelievable. The intensity was massive but that's what made it a special month."

Van Dijk took the Player of the Month honours and had been the subject of praise from his manager earlier in the day ahead of the trip to Brighton and Hove Albion.

"Virgil has outstanding potential," Klopp told a news conference. "He is a fantastic person, he is physically strong and he has all the technical things you need.

"There are so many things that are already good and many things he can also improve. I don't have to judge him now and compare him to other players in the past."

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