Friday 9 December 2016

McCarthy perfect to replace Gerrard - Hamann

Published 05/05/2015 | 02:30

James McCarthy in battle for Everton at this weekend's match against Aston Villa
James McCarthy in battle for Everton at this weekend's match against Aston Villa

Irish international James McCarthy could be the ideal candidate to fill the boots of Steven Gerrard this summer, according to the outgoing Liverpool captain's former team-mate Dietmar Hamann.

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McCarthy has been linked to several Premier League clubs, including both Manchester United and Arsenal, after enjoying another successful season at Everton once he shook off a persistent hamstring issue.

The 24-year-old was awarded the man of the match prize after inspiring the Toffees to a comfortable 3-0 win over United last Sunday week.

And Arsenal have been keeping tabs on the Glaswegian throughout the season as they search for a holding midfielder.

Now McCarthy is being talked up as an option for Liverpool as the Reds prepare for life at Anfield without Gerrard.

Speaking at a special Carlsberg event in Anfield, Hamann said McCarthy has performed "ever so well this season".

He added that Liverpool will need to find a midfielder who can perform "at the highest level every single week" due to the void that will be left by the absence of Gerrard.

"I've always been a big fan of his. I think he's done ever so well this season. Whether he's a player Liverpool are interested in him remains but to be seen but in the centre midfield area . . . Joe Allen, Henderson, there's a few players there.

"Somebody has to step up and perform at the highest every single week because obviously that's what will be missing with Steven Gerrard gone," Hamann said.

The German, who now works as an RTE pundit, added players like the departing Gerrard only emerge every "40-50 years".

Irish Independent

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