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Dec 31, 2012

Liverpool hope to prevent spread of bug

Liverpool have moved to quell concerns that the virus that kept manager Brendan Rodgers away from Sunday's 3-0 win at QPR will spread to the rest of the squad.

Rodgers was sent home after being struck down by the bug, which also affected back-up goalkeeper Brad Jones and head of performance Glen Driscoll.

Assistant manager Colin Pascoe took charge for the win at Loftus Road, but even he was not completely unaffected.

Pascoe was feeling unwell and told by the club's medical staff not to enter the dressing room at half-time, and instead had to hand on instructions to first-team coach Mike Marsh.

But the Reds' No. 2 insisted that was just a precaution to ensure that no else is struck down with illness ahead of Wednesday night's Premier League home game against Sunderland.

He told the Liverpool Echo: "The way the medical team and the doctors work here, they have made sure to isolate those carrying the virus and so have hopefully nipped it in the bud and not too many players or staff will pick it up."

Asked if Rodgers had been in contact with him during the game, Pascoe said: "No, he is that bad. He might not have watched it because he was very bad."

Midfielder Jordan Henderson was also hit by the bug but was able to take his place in the team at Loftus Road.

"I was close to not playing. I had a bad stomach and was sick on Saturday night, which is unusual for me,'' he told the club's official website. "I caught the bug a few people and the boss got, but I love playing football and I want to play every chance I get for this club.

"There's a lot of competition for places, so when you are given the opportunity you can't let anything get in the way. So I was pleased to be able to play. The coaches just said to me see how I felt in the warm-up. I felt okay so I managed to play for an hour which I'm pleased with.

"Many people could see we put in a good performance at QPR. We played some really good football, defended really well, scored some good goals so overall we are delighted. It's always good to bounce back from a defeat with a win in your next game and it was a good test of character for us.

"We just have to keep working hard and keep progressing. I definitely think we are getting better. We've just got to take each game as it comes and keep that winning mentality."

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