Liverpool FC News Recap: Reds book League Cup final, legends feud & top defensive target

Liverpool confirmed their place in the Carabao Cup final against Chelsea, setting up a repeat of 2022's showpiece event, as they beat Fulham 3-2 on aggregate on Wednesday night.

Luis Diaz opened the scoring on 11 minutes at Craven Cottage to give the Reds breathing room. While Issa Diop equalised in the second half, it was not enough to prevent Jurgen Klopp and co marching towards Wembley.

Liverpool now have a chance to extend their own competition record of League Cup wins to ten on 25 February.

Diaz's goal was the difference, but he wasn't the only star who impressed in Anfield Watch's player ratings.

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Leverkusen turn down January approach from Liverpool

Elsewhere, Liverpool have made Bayer Leverkusen's Piero Hincapie a top defensive target ahead of the summer, but were turned down over a possible January deal.

© Proshots - Piero Hincapie

The 22-year-old Ecuadorian is currently managed by former Liverpool midfielder Xabi Alonso at Bundesliga-topping Leverkusen, where he has made 19 appearances in all competitions so far this season.

Anfield Watch understands that Hincapie has been earmarked as a top candidate for the left-sided centre back role – a priority area of focus for the Liverpool recruitment team – ahead of this summer.

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Liverpool and Man City go head to head for Argentine star

Liverpool are 'closely following' Porto midfielder Alan Varela, with an eye on a possible summer move.

The 22-year-old only moved to Portugal last summer, in an initial €8m (£6.5m) deal from Boca Juniors.

The Argentina youth international has become a key player under manager Sergio Conceiçao in his half-season in Europe and is already attracting interest from some of Europe's biggest clubs.

According to Bolavip, both Liverpool and Manchester City are looking at signing Varela in the summer transfer market, with the Reds, in particular, fans of the defensive midfielder since his time at Boca.

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'Supercomputer' projects Liverpool title win

Liverpool will hold off the challenge of Manchester City to win the Premier League title by two points, according to the latest calculations of one "supercomputer".

Jurgen Klopp - Propaganda

LONDON, ENGLAND - Sunday, January 7, 2024: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp celebrates after the FA Cup 3rd Round match between Arsenal FC and Liverpool FC at the Emirates Stadium. Liverpool won 2-0. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

In the real world, the Reds currently sit top of the table on 48 points, five clear of City – who have a game in hand.

According to Bettingexpert's supercomputer, BETSiE, Reds have little to fear as Klopp's men will hold off the challenge of City to lift the Premier League trophy this May.

The latest calculations, updated after Liverpool's 4-0 win over Bournemouth, give the Reds a projected final total of 81.9 points, with Man City trailing behind on 79.2.

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Michael Owen hits back at Robbie Fowler's 'better striker' claim

Michael Owen has made his own case as Liverpool's superior former front man, following Robbie Fowler's comments that he was 'better' than his old teammate.

Recently, there has been an ongoing debate about who out of the pair was the better striker – with the argument stoked by Fowler last month.

Now given the chance to respond to his former teammates words on talkSPORT, Owen tried to give a diplomatic answer but couldn't hide his own feelings.

"I'd expect him to say that and you'd expect me to say listen when I played for Liverpool, who did the manager pick? When I played for England, who did the manager pick? I mean, listen, so I don’t have to say it – it was said for me," Owen said.

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Liverpool fans prefer Europe

While the Reds made it into the Carabao Cup final on Wednesday, it remains the least valued cup competition among fans.

BASEL, SWITZERLAND - Wednesday, May 18, 2016: The UEFA Cup trophy on display before the UEFA Europa League Final between Liverpool and Sevilla at St. Jakob-Park. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

With the Premier League clearly the biggest honour for the Reds, Anfield Watch asked its followers which of the three cup competitions would mean the most to them this season in a poll on X.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, given Liverpool's connection to continental success, the Europa League took the win, with a 43.9% share of the nearly 8,000 votes cast.

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