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Liverpool To Pose Stern Test

Coventry City manager Gordon Strachan believes his side will face one of the toughest examinations of their outstanding home record against Liverpool on Saturday.

The Sky Blues may be the worst side in the league on their travels but their home form has all but guaranteed a 35th season in the top flight.

Coventry have recorded 10 home wins – almost championship form – but Strachan revealed that he is a big fan of Gerard Houllier’s rapidly-improving side.

Strachan said:

“They are a good, good team on the up and feeling good about themselves. They have been looking to get into the same bracket as Manchester United, Liverpool and Arsenal who have been the leading sides for the last few years and I think they are now joining them.

“If you look at some of the football they produce it is excellent and there record over the last three or four months is as good as anyone in the league. People talk about the Liverpool of old but it is a different game now and this new team is different.

“Liverpool are still a big draw and this game sold out a long time ago. Gerard has spent his money wisely and he has had £35 million – I wouldn’t want that, I prefer to wheel and deal

“But they have got a lot of very good kids and that has been the success of Manchester United and Leeds. That is what we are trying to achieve here and I think clubs have shown you can get more out of your younger players.”

Strachan could welcome back his most influential youngster back into the starting line-up. Robbie Keane, who has missed the last three games with a knee injury

Keane has trained this week but the hard ground has not helped his recovery. Strachan also has to make a late decision on whether Magnus Hedman is fit enough to resume after missing the 3-0 defeat at Arsenal.

If the big Swede fails to make it, then veteran Steve Ogrizovic will play his 600th game for the club.

Strachan added: 

“Magnus is touch and go but he is not ruled out yet. Robbie has trained fully but looked a bit wary in a couple of things he was doing. We will have to wait and see if that was because of the ground or if he is still suffering a few problems.”

Strachan was still waiting to hear if Ysrael Zuniga was injured when he was taken off after only 54 minutes of Peru’s 2-0 win over Paraguay.

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'Coventry City - the Elite Era' by Jim Brown

CWN / Sport / Football / Coventry City FC / 28 Mar 00

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This page modified on 10 November 2008 09:49:15AM