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Update time:2021-06-19 20:24Tag:

¡¡¡¡Liverpool have only made two additions to their squad so far this summer. It¡¯s starting to look ready for a title push, however.

¡¡¡¡Liverpool had a strange time over the last campaign. They finished 3rd, which was simultaneously a massive disappointment and cause for celebration.

¡¡¡¡Injuries completely ravaged their season, halting any title challenge by new year. At the same time, managing to string together enough wins for 3rd without any of your starting centre-backs or captain was quite incredible.

¡¡¡¡And it sets up an interesting season next time. The missing players will return, after all, and that should be enough of a boost for a title challenge. Especially with two additions already in the squad.

¡¡¡¡Liverpool¡¯s defence should be stellar. Alisson remains one of the absolute best in the world, while they should have four elite centre-backs to choose from.

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¡¡¡¡Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez and Joel Matip will return ¨C hopefully as good as ever ¨C while Ibrahima Konate joins from RB Leipzig. The Frenchman is a huge talent and ready to go right away. Nat Phillips, too, remains at the club for now. He¡¯s certainly good enough to play a part.

¡¡¡¡There shouldn¡¯t be a repeat of last season¡¯s problems. Surely.

¡¡¡¡The full-backs are brilliant, of course. We might see more of Neco Williams and Kostas Tskimikas next season, too, if Jurgen Klopp feels more comfortable about using them.

¡¡¡¡But Andy Robertson and Trent Alexander-Arnold are the best pairing on the planet. The latter¡¯s form, in particular, was stellar to end the campaign.

¡¡¡¡Midfield looks exciting. Gini Wijnaldum will leave, of course, but that could mean more football for Curtis Jones. Next season really might be a breakout year.

¡¡¡¡The starring roles go to Fabinho, Thiago and Jordan Henderson, though. Fabinho was fantastic once he returned to midfield last season and Thiago was arguably the club¡¯s best player to end the season.

¡¡¡¡We think he¡¯ll only improve with time and the return of Liverpool¡¯s captain. Henderson has an enormous impact on the team, improving everyone. In fact, the 30-year-old has only suffered two Premier League defeats in over two years when starting in midfield.

¡¡¡¡Both were away at Manchester City ¨C the 2-1 in January 2019 and the 4-0 defeat the day after Liverpool won the title.

¡¡¡¡Liverpool Training SessionPhoto by John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images

¡¡¡¡So the defence looks much better and the midfield is one of the world¡¯s best. That leaves the attack ¨C which does face questions.

¡¡¡¡Diogo Jota exceeded expectations last season and, hopefully, kicks on again. But both Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane underperformed last year. That needs to change.

¡¡¡¡There was an overreliance on Mohamed Salah, who had a wonderful season. It¡¯s why we imagine this is where Liverpool will invest next.

¡¡¡¡There will be one addition, though. Harvey Elliott will be included in the first-team squad, according to reports, which could bring some extra creativity.

¡¡¡¡All in all, though, Liverpool look ready for a title push. The defence should be back to something resembling its best, while the midfield looks truly elite.

¡¡¡¡The Reds just need a little more from either Mane or Firmino (or both) to really make them unstoppable. Or who knows? Maybe a new addition or two.

¡¡¡¡What¡¯s for certain is that the squad is in great shape.

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¡¡¡¡Freelance football writer fortunate enough to write about his greatest passion. Born the year after Liverpool¡¯s 18th League title.

¡¡¡¡We could see Marcelo Pitaluga promoted to third choice at Liverpool

¡¡¡¡After the petrol price?in Mumbai reached?Rs 100.19 per litre, the Youth Congress workers on Saturday held a protest against the prevailing rates outside the BJP office. The Mumbai Police informed that they have detained approximately 40-50 people including Congress MLA Zeeshan Siddiqui. The protests, while for a just cause, are perhaps wrongfully directed as the state government also has a hand in determining fuel prices and the Congress is a member of the MVA alliance in Maharashtra.

¡¡¡¡Mumbai | Youth Congress workers hold protest against fuel price hike outside BJP office.

¡¡¡¡We have detained approx 40-50 people including Congress MLA Zeeshan Siddiqui: Mumbai Police pic.twitter.com/TF4pHosaaJ

¡¡¡¡¡ª ANI (@ANI) June 5, 2021

¡¡¡¡Protests were also staged by the Delhi Pradesh Youth Congress members outside the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas in Delhi on Saturday against the rising prices of petrol and diesel.

¡¡¡¡Earlier in May, the petrol prices in Mumbai were?increased to Rs 100 per litre, while diesel was being sold at Rs 92.17 per litre.?On the other hand, Delhi in May had recorded the rate of Rs 93.94 per litre for petrol and Rs 84.89 per litre for diesel.?After May 4, petrol has become Rs 3.54 a litre costlier and diesel Rs 4.16.

¡¡¡¡On Wednesday,?the?Aam Aadmi Party?(AAP) held a demonstration against the rising fuel prices by playing a game of cricket outside the?BJP?office in Dadar East.?Preeti Sharma Menon, AAP National Executive Member and Mumbai in-charge said, ¡°With Modi as the opening batsman, and Amit Shah at the non-striker¡¯s end, and with Ambani and Adani bowling; the match has already been fixed.

¡¡¡¡Ruben Mascarenhas, AAP National Joint Secretary, said, ¡°This is a PR Sarkar (a government that runs on public relations), where perception matters more than content. Given that fuel prices have crossed the century mark, the Centre must be called out for refusing to provide any relief to the people of this country.¡±

¡¡¡¡Currently, people in several cities in Rajasthan, Maharashtra, and Madhya Pradesh, are paying more than Rs 100 for one litre of petrol, these cities include Ratnagiri, Parbhani, Aurangabad, Indore, Bhopal, Gwalior, Jaisalmer, Ganganagar, and Banswara.

¡¡¡¡Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had earlier said that fuel prices should be discussed by both States and the Centre?because it’s not just the Centre that has duties on petroleum price, states are also charging. While the centre draws revenue, 41% of it goes to the State.

¡¡¡¡READ | Petrol hits record Rs 99.71/litre in Mumbai after another fuel price hike

¡¡¡¡The surge in fuel prices can be attributed to the surge in international oil rates and exorbitant domestic tax structures.?

¡¡¡¡The Indian fuel retailers align pump prices of petrol and diesel with their international benchmark rates of the previous day.?

¡¡¡¡International oil prices over the last months have seen upward and downward movements, while the rates of fuels in India have only moved in an upward direction.

¡¡¡¡In June 2010, the government deregulated the pricing of petrol, while diesel was deregulated on October 19, 2014. Following this, state-run retailers were free to change pump prices every day.

¡¡¡¡READ | Petrol crosses Rs 100/litre in Thane, hits Rs 99.94 in Mumbai

¡¡¡¡(Image: ANI)

¡¡¡¡READ | Petrol at Rs 100: Thane NCP puts up ‘celebratory’ hoardingsREAD | Petrol crosses Rs 100 a litre in Mumbai, Rs 93 per litre in national capitalREAD | India brings forward target of 20 pc ethanol-blending in petrol to 2023