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Liverpool star excited by West Ham test

Jonjo Shelvey, Liverpool. Picture: Mike Egerton/EMPICS Jonjo Shelvey, Liverpool. Picture: Mike Egerton/EMPICS

Saturday, December 8, 2012
10:11 AM

Liverpool midfielder Jonjo Shelvey accepts he can never replace top scorer Luis Suarez but he is ready to fill in for him on a temporary basis.

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The Uruguay international, who has 10 Barclays Premier League goals this season, is suspended for Sunday’s trip to West Ham after incurring five bookings this season.

It leaves Liverpool without a recognised senior striker as Fabio Borini is still working his way back to fitness.

Manager Brendan Rodgers has used the Europa League to try to work out an alternative and although reserve team striker Adam Morgan has been given a run out his most likely option at Upton Park will be Shelvey.

The former Charlton player, who is Liverpool’s top scorer in Europe with four goals this season, was utilised in a false nine position in the 2-2 draw with Young Boys just over a fortnight ago.

“Luis is a world class striker so everything he touches goes in,” said the Romford-born Shelvey, who grew up supporting the Hammers and played for their youth team.

“I played there against Young Boys there and thought I did all right, I did a job for the team.

“It is difficult to adjust because you have your back to your opponent all the time whereas in midfield you can see in front of you, so it is difficult in that respect.

“It is a different type of fitness as well but I’ll be ready for it.

“You have to be aware of where other players are each side of you and in that respect I think I have got to do some work.

“But you play where you are told and it is always an honour to play.

“I’m excited because it is the team I supported but it is not an easy player’s boots to fill.

“West Ham are a good team and a different type to play against as they are a bit more direct that others in the Premier League.”

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