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Saturday, Nov. 20, 2010

Liverpool lashes out after Gerrard's injury

WEMBLEY, England (AP) Liverpool accused the English Football Association of incompetence after midfielder Steven Gerrard limped off in Wednesday's friendly against France after playing longer than had been agreed with his club.

News photo
Paying the price: Steven Gerrard kneels on the pitch at Wembley Stadium after suffering a hamstring injury in Wednesday's 2-1 loss to France. AP PHOTO

England coach Fabio Capello confirmed that Gerrard was only due to play for an hour, but had been kept on the pitch longer due to an injury to Gareth Barry during the 2-1 loss to the French.

The midfielder subsequently strained his hamstring and was forced off in the 85th minute, immediately provoking an angry response from Darren Burgess, Liverpool's head of fitness and conditioning.

"Unbelievable from all associated with England and English F.A. with regard to SG's injury," Burgess posted on Twitter. "Completely ignored agreement and past history."

Burgess added in another post: "Completely amateurish and now we pay for their incompetence. Absolutely disgraceful."

While Burgess quickly removed his messages as they spread across the Internet, Capello said he understood why Liverpool was upset.

"We spoke with Steve and he said he would play one hour, but after Barry's injury we had some problems," Capello said. "That was the reason he stayed on the pitch. If it's possible, the players will play the time we agreed with the club.

"But Barry was really injured so we needed someone senior on the pitch because it was a really young team. He said he was good . . . I understand why they're upset and I'm also upset."

Donovan's future

CARSON , Calif. (AP) The Los Angeles Galaxy's Landon Donovan will consider over the next few weeks whether to play overseas on loan.

If he decides on it, Donovan said, he most likely would return to Everton in England's Premier League.

Donovan spent 10 weeks on loan with Everton earlier this year. He finished with two goals and three assists in 13 games, including wins over Manchester United and Chelsea.

"My plan is to rest over the next few weeks and get in a mental place where I can make a proper decision," said Donovan, who played in 30 of the past 33 months, including all four of the United States' games during the World Cup.

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