Skipper demands team focus solely on the semi-final, says Belgian no.1…
Liverpool no.1 Simon Mignolet says that the squad are not getting caught up in any romantic Steven Gerrard related FA Cup discussions…
As has been repeatedly publicised, if we progress through to the FA Cup final, Gerrard’s final game before he departs to Los Angeles will at Wembley, and the match conveniently falls on his 35th birthday, too.
However, Mignolet claims that his skipper is determined for his teammates not to get ahead of themselves, and must only focus on the remaining Premier League games and the FA Cup semi-final on April 19 versus Aston Villa.
“Nobody is talking about it [the potential final]. Stevie is the first one to acknowledge that,” Mignolet began.
“Before we speak about the final, we have got to get through the semi-final and that is only possible after getting through here.
“The only thing we can keep in mind now is how to get past Villa. Then we will see what comes. Villa will be tough.
“He is the first one to acknowledge that we can’t have any extra pressure on the team.
“He won’t let us think in a different way. We just want to focus on Villa and the games before that.”
“We are pleased to get to the semi-final. Once it is semi-final time, we will make sure we are ready. But everything comes step by step. Newcastle is next.
“There is still a lot to play for. The only thing that we can do is take every game as it comes.
“When you are at Liverpool, you know you have to win every single game.
“After the results against Arsenal and Manchester United, we knew there was going to be criticism. You have to accept that.
“The only thing you can do is respond and we did that. Now the focus is on Newcastle. We will do our best to get three points.”
With a top four finish probably unrealistic now following consecutive Premier League defeats to Arsenal and Manchester United, fans are putting most of their eggs this season in the FA Cup basket…
We probably wouldn’t have taken a fifth place finish and an FA Cup win at the start of the campaign, but we certainly would now…
But Mignolet and Gerrard are right. All talk of the final should be shelved until we get past Villa in a week and a bit’s time.