CAN HITS BACK AT CRIT­ICS

Reds mid­fielder says money is not ev­ery­thing for him

New Straits Times - - Sport -

LON­DON end of the sea­son but the prospect of him im­prov­ing his £35,000-per-week (RM190terms was ini­tially raised last sum­mer.

It has been re­ported that Can is ask­ing for £100,000 per week — a fig­ure that would be far in ex­cess of Liverpool's val­u­a­tion — but he in­sisted that was not the case. Talks have been placed on hold.

Can main­tains di­a­logue will re­open once the cam­paign is over, ex­plain­ing that the pri­or­ity is se­cur­ing Liverpool’s place in the Cham­pi­ons League.

“I read it was about money but it isn’t,” said Can, who ar­rived from Bayer Lev­erkusen in sum­mer 2014.

“We’ve had a few good meet­ings and ev­ery­thing is fine. I am happy at Liverpool. You never know what will hap­pen in foot­ball but I am happy and still con­tracted here.

“Ev­ery­thing is fine and I just wanted to say it is never about the money. It is about the fu­ture, what hap­pens. The last few months, the most im­por­tant thing has been that I am pain-free (from a calf is­sue) and we have spo­ken more about that than the con­tract.

“We will speak in the next few weeks and months and see what hap­pens. I want to play in­juryfree. The meet­ings are with my agent but I am very happy at Liverpool. In the fu­ture I can play for many years at Liverpool.”

Hav­ing en­joyed an up­turn in for­tunes when Jur­gen Klopp ar­rived at the club last sea­son, Can's form has been er­ratic this time around with his per­for­mance against Burn­ley an in­di­ca­tor of how much he has swung from one ex­treme to an­other.

He had been poor in the first 45 min­utes but emerged as a key fig­ure in a cru­cial 2-1 vic­tory. The 23year-old has put his in­con­sis­tent form down to an in­jury in his calf that has pre­vented him from be­ing able to run at times dur­ing games.

“I know I could do much bet­ter in the past,” said Can. “I’ve had a few calf prob­lems but I kept go­ing and I played. Maybe it was not good that I played and did not have a break but the last few weeks were bet­ter and I feel strong again.

“I’ve had calf prob­lems for many years and it has been very dif­fi­cult for me be­cause I’ve played out of po­si­tion which means more sprints and 10 min­utes into the game I’ve not been able to feel my feet in a few games. I didn’t like to go to the press and say ‘I am in­jured’.

“I didn’t play well when it was my op­por­tu­nity to play and it was my mis­take. I play in a dif­fer­ent po­si­tion now and I don’t sprint too much. Last week (against Arse­nal) was good, against Burn­ley was good and I was pain-free. It has been dif­fi­cult but it is good again.” Daily Mail

REUTERS PIC

Liverpool’s Emre Can (left) cel­e­brates his goal against Burn­ley in their Premier League match on Sun­day.

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