Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet insists the Premier League leaders are unfazed by Jose Mourinho’s threat to field a weakened Chelsea team in Sunday’s crucial title clash.
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Chelsea travel to Anfield three days before their Champions League semifinal second leg with Atletico Madrid, which is finely poised at 0-0. Mourinho wishes to prioritise Europe over the league and, with injuries and suspensions having hit his squad, has apparently been given permission by the club’s board to rotate.
With Liverpool currently five points clear of second-place Chelsea, a victory for Brendan Rodgers’ side would kill off Mourinho’s slim title hopes for good; Mignolet believes his teammates are focused on that rather than the Portuguese’s mind games.
"We don't really read too much into that," Mignolet told Liverpool’s official website.
"It's more about us and about what we have to do, rather than looking at someone else. We have to make sure that we're ready for the game, like we've done so far this season. It doesn't make any difference.”
The goalkeeper does not buy into the weakened team label and is adamant Chelsea’s squad is strong throughout. However, Mignolet stated if Liverpool play to the standard which has seen them rise to the top of the table, they will have nothing to worry about.
"Chelsea have got a very good team, they have got lots of quality players throughout their squad. We'll very much be prepared for a tough game again,” Mignolet said.
"Like we've done all season, it's about looking at ourselves and making sure we do our things; we'll prepare ourselves well this week and make sure that we play the best that we can. Then there's nothing to worry about."
Liverpool have been handed an injury boost ahead of the tie, which could cement their title credentials as they aim for a first league championship since 1990.
Daniel Sturridge is hopeful of a return against his former club and expects to be fit for the game.
However, on-loan attacker Victor Moses is ineligible to play for against his parent club.