Dalglish welcomes return of Gerrard

 

Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish believes Steven Gerrard is fitter than he has been for some time and is keen to get his captain back up to speed as quickly as possible.

The England midfielder made his first appearance since October as a second-half substitute in the frustrating 1-1 draw at home to Blackburn yesterday.

Gerrard, who had groin surgery in March which prematurely ended his campaign last season, almost had the perfect comeback as he arrived on the pitch to take a free-kick from which his side almost went in front, but Dalglish knows the player needs more time to regain top form.

"It is fantastic that he has got back and he looks a lot stronger now and is a lot fitter now than he was in years gone by," said the Scot.

"But obviously he needs time on the pitch and we have to try to accommodate that.

"With his first touch he created a chance for Maxi Rodriguez with a header and he knocked it wide - that would have been a fantastic start.

"It is great to see him back fit and well and available for consideration again."

Having fallen behind to Charlie Adam's own goal on the stroke of half-time Liverpool had only Rodriguez's close-range header to show for dominating the entire game without causing too many problems for goalkeeper Mark Bunn, deputising for the injured Paul Robinson.

The closest the Reds came to winning it came in the final 30 seconds as Andy Carroll, on his first start in four matches, was denied by Bunn's brilliant save while Daniel Agger had a header cleared off the line with the final kick of the match from 17-year-old Adam Henley on his first senior start.

Dalglish has had to repeat himself on many occasions this season - this was Liverpool's sixth home draw in nine outings in which they have been the better side - and he found himself doing so again.

"We will continue getting in there and making chances and play the way we are playing," he added.

"Most of the things we do well and do right and if we get a bit of luck and a bit more belief in ourselves - with the goalkeeper coming and having a nightmare - that would be helpful to us."

Under-pressure Blackburn manager Steve Kean left Anfield delighted with a point, even if his side remain bottom of the table.

"I enjoyed it. We were disappointed in the way we started the second half but in the first half we got our defensive organisation sorted," he said.

"We have worked on that to try to establish a platform and work on counter-attacks.

"I said to them (before the game): 'Don't leave any regrets in the dressing room'.

"Full credit to the lads, we dug in and managed to get something from the game."

PA

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee