Suarez for Barca’s Indonesia friendly; Liverpool to revamp Anfield; Lampard could play Chelsea again

A round-up of the interesting events from the world of football.

BARCELONA, SPAIN - AUGUST 17: Luis Suarez (R) in action during a FC Barcelona training session at Ciutat Esportiva on August 17, 2014 in Barcelona, Spain.  (Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images)
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Barcelona

Barcelona are off to a perfect start, with four wins in the Primera Liga, but the fact that they have yet to concede a goal has been the biggest surprise. But despite four shutouts, Luis Enrique, the Barcelona coach, believes the team can still do better, starting tonight at Malaga. “We are doing well, there is no doubt, and I think that we will still improve at the back,” he said. “It still doesn’t mean that we won’t go on to concede goals and lose matches, and we are looking to improve individually and as a group.” Enrique said yesterday that Luis Suarez is set to play a friendly for the club’s B team against Indonesia today to maintain his fitness. His four-month ban for biting ends next month. “He has been training hard, showing a lot of willingness and is looking forward to returning, so this game does look like a good opportunity to give him a run out if [Barca B coach] Eusebio is happy to do that,” Enrique said.

Liverpool

Liverpool were granted planning permission for phase one of the expansion of their Anfield stadium, the Liverpool city council said yesterday. The Main Stand will expand by 8,500 seats, taking the capacity of Liverpool’s iconic stadium to 54,000. Liverpool hope to complete the first phase of the development in time for the 2016/17 season, while there is no time scale on the second stage of the project, which will increase the capacity of the Anfield Road end by 4,800 seats. Ian Ayre, the Liverpool chief executive, said: “Today’s approval by the planning committee is another step on our journey, which we embarked on two years ago.”

Manchester City

Frank Lampard’s loan spell at Manchester City could come to an end with a game at his former club Chelsea on January 31, City manager Manuel Pellegrini said. Lampard, 36, scored a late equaliser for City in their 1-1 draw at home to Chelsea in the Premier League on Sunday. It was his first appearance against Chelsea since he ended his 13-year association with the club. The midfielder is due to link up with parent club New York City FC in January, but Pellegrini says he could feature in City’s return fixture against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge. “Frank will stay until January, because until January, he doesn’t have anything to do in the United States, because they are not working,” he said. Lampard could feature for City as they face Championship side Sheffield United in the third round of the English League Cup tonight.

Tottenham Hotspur

Mauricio Pochettino says his Tottenham players need to be more aggressive ahead of tonight’s English League Cup home tie with Nottingham Forest. Having won their first two Premier League games, the London side have not won since, and lost 1-0 to previously winless West Bromwich Albion on Sunday. Pochettino said: “We need to change the mentality and make sure we are ready every time. We need to be more aggressive in the last third of the pitch.”

Paris Saint-Germain

Laurent Blanc concedes that his Paris Saint-Germain team are having “a bit of a hard time”, after drawing their past three games in largely unimpressive fashion. The French Ligue 1 champions face Caen tonight. “It is true that all these draws are not reassuring,” the PSG manager said. “We must acknowledge that we are going through a bit of a hard time.”

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