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Monday, 16 March 2015
Joe: I've changed as a player since Swans
Allen will make only his second return to the place he called home for
13 years tonight - and the midfielder believes he will do so as a more
developed, versatile footballer.
their first fixture for eight days against Swansea City at the Liberty
Stadium, and Allen admits he's relishing making another comeback to his
The Welshman first came to the attentions of Swans scouts at the age
of nine, and once recruited to their Academy set-up, the boy from
Carmarthen rose through the ranks to the first team.
When Brendan Rodgers arrived at the club in 2010, Allen's keen
passing style endeared him to the manager and when Rodgers moved to
Anfield two years later, so too did the midfielder.
Since then, 87 Reds appearances have followed for the Wales
international, and he believes the time spent on Merseyside has helped
mould him into a different type of player.
"There has been growth," Allen told Liverpoolfc.com. "There have been
a few frustrations with injury, but I've moved forward a lot.
"The responsibilities that I have in this team are a lot different to
Swansea, so the type of player I've become is different. I'm certainly
more versatile. I've added a lot to my game and I'm looking forward to
going back and playing there again."
If absence from the FA Cup quarter-final draw with Blackburn Rovers
last weekend disrupted Allen's run of six consecutive games in the side,
he insists the stalemate has not affected the team's momentum heading
into tonight's clash.
"There's certainly a lot of belief," explained the 25-year-old. "It's
[about getting] that balance. Performances are what we always strive to
get first and, with that, we're confident we can get the result.
"Our performances were up and down and we weren't getting the results
we wanted [earlier in the season]. But we seem to have turned both
"When you get those two things together, it certainly makes you feel
like you can go and play anyone, anywhere, and do the job. But there's
no getting carried away at the same time.
"There are a lot of games between now and the end of the season where we have to make sure we keep our levels really high."
Swansea currently sit ninth in the Premier League table and have not
dropped below the midway point in the standings since the start of the
They recorded their first-ever league double over Manchester United
when they won 2-1 in their last home match, thanks to goals from Ki
Sung-Yeung and Bafetimbi Gomis.
Arsenal have also fallen to defeat at the Liberty Stadium this
season, and Allen is unequivocal as to whose influence has helped steer
the Swans to an impressive campaign so far.
"When Garry Monk's name was one of the ones put forward [to manage
Swansea], I was really keen and excited for him to get it," said the
"Having played with him when he was the team captain, I always knew
he'd go on and be a great manager. In a year, he's shown his ability.
The team has been consistently good. They've been in the top half all
season and it's great to see the club I used to play for doing so well."