John Arne Riise.

John Arne Riise admits Liverpool need players who will smash the opposition

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John Arne Riise was never known to shy away from a challenge during his Liverpool days and the former defender wants to see Jurgen Klopp add similarly aggressive players in the transfer window.

The Norwegian believes Liverpool possess the right level of creative players - and Philippe Coutinho, Adam Lallana and Roberto Firmino certainly tick that box - and now need players who will get stuck in.

Riise became a fan favourite during his seven-year stay at Anfield and the Liverpool faithful certainly miss watching a player with the same level of bite and desire.


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Under Klopp, it is hoped the Reds can return to the heights they reached in 2005, when Riise helped them win the Champions League.

However, he must add some new pieces to the squad before that is possible. And not just any sort of player, according to Riise.

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He said, per FourFourTwo: “In football, you need players to smash the opposition and be aggressive.

“The fans love to see aggression and passion. When I played for Liverpool, no team liked to come to Anfield and face us because they knew they would be in for a tough game, where there would be plenty of aggression and attack.

“That level of intensity and passion is coming back and it comes from the influence of the manager, but Liverpool also need to bring in new players.

“Yes, you need the creative players like Firmino and Coutinho, but you also need people to get stuck in and smash the opponents like how Didi (Dietmar Hamann), Jamie (Carragher), (Sami) Hyppia, Steven (Gerrard) and (Javier) Mascherano did when I was there.”

Liverpool's Norwegian player John Arne R


Those aforementioned names will bring back fond memories among Liverpool fans of an era when the club never knew when they were beaten.

Excluding Mascherano, that group of players won the 2005 Champions League despite trailing AC Milan 3-0 in the final.

The words ‘give up’ just weren’t a part of the vocabulary a decade ago.

Liverpool have shown a similar level of resiliency under Klopp - on Sunday, they overcame a 1-0 deficit with 10 men to beat Crystal Palace - but Riise believes the team’s spine needs strengthening.

The left-back said: “Look, I love the club and even now, I watch every game when I can so I don’t like to say anything negative.

“But the core needs to be stronger. They need a new goalkeeper, a new centre-back, a new central midfielder and a striker.

Liverpool's Spanish striker Fernando Tor

"We once had Gerrard and Alonso"

“We once had players like Gerrard, Fernando Torres and Xabi Alonso, who were footballers at the top of their games. We need those types of players at Liverpool again.

“I am sure Klopp already has some ideas on who he wants in, but a big name is needed to make the fans believe again.”

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Luis Suarez
Premier League
Fernando Torres
Steven Gerrard
Xabi Alonso

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