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Lallana locked into China link

发稿时间:2019-11-12 来源: eurtoday

 

Liverpool's Adam Lallana is substituted after sustaining an injury at Crystal Palace on Saturday. [Photo/Agencies]

  Liverpool star Adam Lallana says his good friend Jose Fonte is keeping him updated on his Chinese adventure-but Lallana has no plans to follow the Portuguese here just yet.

  Fonte, who played with Lallana at Southampton, joined newly promoted Dalian Yifang from West Ham United for $7 million in January.

  Yifang has endured a torrid start to life in the Chinese Super League, falling to three straight defeats, including an 8-0 thrashing by Shanghai SIPG, and recently had a new manager, Bernd Schuster, installed.

  But despite the tough times at Dalian, Lallana says Fonte has been impressed by his new surrounds.

  "We've picked up a lot about the CSL here in England since all the high-profile names started going there, and I know someone who is out there myself, Jose Fonte" Lallana told China Daily in a phone interview on Thursday.

  "He tells me the game is growing a lot there and it's exciting times.

  "Obviously, Chinese culture is not what he's used to, and he's still settling in. His team hasn't had the best of starts, but I'll be interested to see how it goes."

  World Cup woe

  Attacking midfielder Lallana, who joined Liverpool from Southampton for around $35 million in 2014, was hopeful of securing a place in Gareth Southgate's England squad for this summer's World Cup finals.

  However, the 29-year-old, who has 34 international caps, hobbled off the Selhurst Park pitch on Saturday looking disconsolate after sustaining a serious hamstring injury during Liverpool's 2-1 win over Crystal Palace.

  "It is not good," Reds manager Jurgen Klopp said of the injury after the game. "Not for Lallana, not for Klopp and not for Southgate."

  A scan will determine a prognosis this week, but, in comments two days earlier that now sound ominous, Lallana spoke cautiously to China Daily about his World Cup chances, after missing the first four months of the season with a thigh problem.

  "A lot of things can happen between now and the finals, so I'm really just focusing on maintaining my fitness," he said.

  Earlier last week, Lallana made a 30-minute cameo off the bench in England's 1-1 draw with Italy at Wembley. That followed the Three Lions' victory over the Netherlands and November draws with defending world champion Germany and Brazil-results Lallana believes England can draw heart from.

  "We've failed a lot at major tournaments and I doubt people will be expecting a lot from us," he said.

  "But the last four results against major powers have been positive. So I think you can say there has been a progression under Gareth and I see it as an exciting time to be part of an England squad."

  Next up for Liverpool is an all-English Champions League quarterfinal against Manchester City at Anfield on Wednesday.

  The Reds hold the distinction of being the only team to beat runaway leader City in the Premier League this season after a breathless 4-3 victory in January in which Klopp's bust-a-gut pressing tactics knocked Pep Guardiola's side out of its usually mesmerizing passing rhythm.

  And Lallana has told fans to expect a similarly high-energy Reds display when the rivalry resumes.

  "We know how to beat them, so it would be silly not to go out with the same idea," said Lallana.

  "Every manager has his own characteristics. Jurgen demands a lot in training and he wants us to play on the front foot and everyone is working hard and buys into his philosophy."

  And while a move to China might not be in the offing for Lallana, he still intends to get his fix of Chinese culture closer to home.

  The Terracotta Warriors are currently on display at Liverpool World Museum, and Lallana said: "That's something I'm hoping to get to see-as soon as I get a few days off that is!"

  Unfortunately for injured Lallana, he could now be paying that visit on crutches.

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