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Sami Hyypia: My last chance for title

Sami Hyypia: My last chance for title

Aug 2 2007

by Ian Doyle, Liverpool Daily Post

Sami Hyypia

SAMI HYYPIA concedes this season could represent his last chance to win the Premiership with Liverpool.

But the Finland international is confident Rafael Benitez’s new-look side will provide a greater challenge to the top-flight dominance of Manchester United and Chelsea.

The Anfield outfit have splashed out close to £40million during the summer transfer window as they bid to end a championship drought that stretches back to 1990.

The Premier League crown would complete the set of medals for Hyypia, who has already won the European Cup, UEFA Cup, Super Cup, FA Cup and League Cup while at Anfield.

And the veteran, in the final year of his present contract, believes the likes of Fernando Torres, Ryan Babel and Yossi Benayoun will strengthen Liverpool’s claims this campaign.

“I don’t want to make any prediction about what we’ll do this season, but what I will say is that all the teams

are going forward in building their squads every year, and we have to be in that race,” said the centre-back. “It’s difficult to compare teams from different seasons because all the squads are trying to strengthen.

“The signings we have made seem to be very good players from what we’ve seen in training and the friendlies, but we haven’t even started the season proper yet.

“They have got to prove they can do it in the Premiership, that’s where it will count. But from what I’ve seen so far, they look as though they will strengthen us.”

Hyypia is approaching his ninth season at Liverpool since his £3million move from Dutch team Willem II in 1999.

Despite being ousted as a first-team regular by Daniel Agger, the 33-year-old still started 29 games last campaign.

Newcastle United and Wigan were among the clubs linked with a move for Hyypia during the summer, only for the defender to stay.

And on his future, he added: “I have one more year to go, and hopefully I’ll play as many games as I did last season. After that, I’ll see what I’m going to do.

“Is this my last chance to win the league with Liverpool? We’ll see.”

Hyypia played the full 90 minutes of Liverpool’s Barclays Asia Trophy final against Portsmouth on Friday.

The Anfield side lost on penalties after a goalless draw in Hong Kong, but Hyypia said: “The positive was that we kept a clean sheet. The circumstances were difficult for both teams and it wasn’t an easy 90 minutes, the heat made it more difficult but by drinking a lot were okay.

“Both teams played quite well considering and could run for the whole game, and it was quite an exciting match.”


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