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Reds want Owen on long term

Liverpool: Gerard Houllier said Thursday England striker Michael Owen would be offered a new long-term contract as Liverpool moved to make up for missing out on the Champions League.

Houllier is determined to re-shape his squad to make a serious assault on the Premiership title next season. Defeat at Chelsea on the final day of the season robbed them of a place in Europe’s elite competition.

Owen has two years left on his current deal, and Liverpool’s failure to reach the Champions League led to speculation about his long-term future. But Liverpool are confident Owen will stay at Anfield. “Michael is a genuine world-class player. He has had a great season and I think he will be even better next season,” Houllier told the BBC. Owen has also rid himself of the hamstring problems that haunted his career.

“We want to win the title. This is our vision at Liverpool — and we want to win it with Michael in our team.”

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