Gerrard: We Can Win Manchester United
Steven Gerrard faced national and local media on Friday afternoon to preview Saturday’s Premier League game against Manchester United.
Speaking via a virtual press conference from Bodymoor Heath, the Aston Villa head coach was quizzed on a number of topics.Information Guide Nigeria
Here’s what he had to say…
On team news…
“Young Jaden Philogene-Bidace has been offloaded for a few days, he’s got a tight pelvis area, so we’ve come off him for a few days. He’ll be back in training on Monday, all being well.
“He’s the only change from the squad. Leon Bailey and Marvelous Nakamba are still out. They’re progressing well in their rehabs.
“The squad will be pretty similar to Monday. Anwar’s gone out to Everton, so we wish him well. We obviously add Philippe and Lucas to the mix and they’re both fit and in contention.”
On reuniting with Philippe Coutinho…
“He’s not match fit because over at Barcelona he’s been doing a lot of individual training and in small groups. He also had a Covid situation.
“He’s trained fully for the last couple of days. There’s still a fantastic player there, and there’s a lot of excitement in the building as well as outside.
“It’s great to have him, he’s been smiling away for a few days. It’s my job to get him settled as quickly as possible and get him enjoying his football again.
“I’m sure there’s a lot of football left in this boy because for me, he’s a fantastic talent and we’re lucky to have him. At the right time, he’ll be unleashed.”
On signing Lucas Digne…
“It shows the intent from the top of the club all the way down. It filters down from the two owners, who’ve been a fantastic support to myself. Christian Purslow and Johan Lange have backed that up.
“We’re delighted to have Lucas with his pedigree: a French international who’s got big Premier League experience, he’s been to high class football clubs and won.
“When the opportunity came to get him in, we jumped at it; we were aggressive and the club backed me on that. We’re delighted to have another wonderfully gifted footballer at our disposal.
“Both footballers will make this group stronger, better and more experienced. To have more in the dressing room that have won, is vitally important because that’s the direction we want to go in.”
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On the club’s ambitions…
“We’ve come here for a reason and that reason is to be as successful as we can. The important message and statement of intent that I want to show is to the group of players that we’ve got here.
“This is what we want – we want an elite environment, we want to create a team and build and go on a journey that takes us up the table. We want to compete, moving forward, for domestic cups.
“We want to finish the league campaign as strong as we can, we want to put ourselves in a healthier position as the weeks go by, get a strong pre-season under our belt and keep pushing.
“Hopefully we can create some memories for the supporters, that’s what it’s all about. The intent and the statement was for the group of players: we’ll get you support.
“The first two signings have been good, positive signings. You can see the lift it’s given the players and I’m sure they’ll add a lot to the group.”
On playing Manchester United…
“The only frustration I had the other night is we didn’t progress in the FA Cup, which is important to us.
“The only way to get the feeling and the mood back that I want is to get a big result tomorrow. It’s a unique situation, playing the same team twice in a short space of time, but it’s also a fantastic opportunity to bounce back.
“If we can find a similar level of performance, be a little bit more ruthless in the final third and the big calls on the night go in our favour, I’ve got no doubt we can get the result we want.
“We know the quality and the level of player that’s coming to Villa Park and the challenge ahead of us. We’ll be respectful of that, but the players should take big belief and confidence that when they’re at their best, we can create problems for Manchester United.”JAMB Result
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