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Admiring Ki very happy to sing Joe's praises

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: February 16, 2013

Comments (4)

JOE Allen may still be battling to impress at Liverpool, but his replacement at Swansea City wants to be like him.

Allen started the first 17 games of Liverpool's Premier League campaign after following Brendan Rodgers on the road from Wales to the North West.

But the former Swansea favourite has struggled for game-time of late after suffering a dip in form.

Allen has been given a warm reception by his old club's fans in Swansea's two previous meetings with Liverpool this season.

But it may be that he does not make it on to the pitch tomorrow if, as has been the case in recent weeks, Rodgers goes with Steven Gerrard and Lucas Leiva at the base of midfield.

Crack it

Whether he features this weekend or not, Liverpool's management believe £15 million Allen is a player who will ultimately crack it at Anfield just as he did at the Liberty Stadium.

And Ki Sung-Yueng, the man Michael Laudrup brought in once had Allen had said his farewells, hopes to emulate his predecessor in the Swansea midfield.

"Joe is a very good player," Ki states.

"I had watched him many times when he was at Swansea and I played against him in the Olympics too.

"He can pass, he can do the defensive work very well — he just knows how to play football.

"Sometimes people expect you to be better than Joe was when he was here but I respect him too much to think like that.

"He is a good player in his own right with great qualities.

"We are different kinds of players. I am obviously bigger than him and we have different aspects to our game. But we are also similar in our way of thinking about the game — we both want to pass the ball.

"All I can say is that he is a very good player and hopefully I can show I am a good player here too."

Ki has begun that job already, having quickly established himself as a regular in Laudrup's side following his £5.5 million switch from Celtic back in August.

The South Korean international has chalked up 30 Swansea appearances already and, though he is yet to score for the club, he has proved to be a useful asset in the middle of the pitch.

"Ki has played a lot of games and, when you have played a lot of games, that means you are important to the team," Laudrup says.

"Ki had a knowledge of British football before he came here because he was playing for Celtic, but this is his first season in the Premier League.

"He is still adapting I think — it's not easy physically or mentally — but he is doing well.

"I think the experience he is getting this year will be important for him and for us as well."

So Laudrup is expecting more from Ki who, at only 24, still has his best years in front of him.

Given the strides he has made already in a Swansea shirt, the prospect of further improvement will excite the club's fans.

And not only the ever-growing South Korean contingent who can now be spotted in the Liberty's stands.

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  • jackinthebox  |  February 17 2013, 11:41AM

    A useful barometer of feeling in Merseyside is to scan the Liverpool Echo and their football section. Fans are really losing it with BR, Borini and Allen. For some, their signing of AW would be the last straw.

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  • Hadoken863234  |  February 17 2013, 4:17AM

    Read in the paper today that BR wants Ashley Williams to go to Liverpool, joe allen was also saying he thinks he would do well at a higher level. What like Joe and Sinclair did who now spend more time on the bench than playing football. Captain at Swansea for next few years who are going places beyond dreaming or flavour of the month at Liverpool like Joe Allen. Williams would be stupid to leave swansea. Even Gylfi is on the bench a lot of the time at tottenham, not one single player or manager has made a success of themselves in recent years since leaving swansea. While swansea have excelled to now being a sustainable top half club. I never liked liverpool as a club, they all have this sickening sense of self entitlement, if its not their dead footy fans its living in the past about their old form which sadly is non existent in recent years.

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  • waunarlwydd  |  February 16 2013, 3:15PM

    IMO Ki is much better ! And I'm not just saying that cos Joe left, I mean it. Much better. Joe is sitting on the bench a lot, wonder why.

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  • citizen33  |  February 16 2013, 8:51AM

    OMG, I have seen some cringeworthy journalism but the spin on this article takes the pie. Joe Allen played for us last season. We sold him, moved on and are stronger now. Allen is having a mediocre season in a mid-table team. That team is a rival and nothing would have suited them better than to take 4 points from us and send us down. Allen took the money and has made his own bed to lie in. Time to forget him.

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