Rodgers: We sent title rivals a signal
Brendan Rodgers said the “composure, aggression and arrogance” his Liverpool side showed in the 4-0 demolition of Tottenham Hotspur last week showed they are serious contenders for the Premier League.
Chelsea returned to the top of the table on Saturday with a 3-0 victory over Stoke City, but the Reds will go two points clear of the Blues if they win their game in hand at West Ham United on Sunday.
Liverpool have not won the league since 1990, but Rodgers believes the manner in which they dispatched Spurs was a warning to their title rivals.
“Our performance was the biggest signal last week,” he told the club’s official website. “Coming into the game, there was a lot of talk it would be a real test of where we're at.
“The composure, aggression and arrogance with which we played was brilliant -- and I see it in training every day, and that's what makes me calm. The players are doing their best and we are rinsing absolutely everything out of them -- mentally, physically, technically, tactically -- and hopefully that continues. We still stay calm and enjoy it.”
Though Manchester City are currently just one point behind Liverpool with a game in hand, the Reds know their destiny is in their own hands approaching their final six games because they host Manuel Pellegrini’s men next Sunday.
Rodgers, though, is not looking beyond the trip to West Ham.
“If you look too far ahead, it gets too daunting,” he said. “That's why when you climb a mountain, you climb it in stages. You don't do it in one hit.
"We chunk our season into games. Sunday will be the last of a block of five games we look to in terms of points. Once that is done, there are five games left and we will look at that block and what we need. It's done game by game, really.
"Six games is still a long way out. Some people think that, with six games to go, the finishing line is in sight, but it's still a way out. I can only think of the next match. And if we win that, we will go into the next one.
"West Ham are in good form, six wins out of nine, and are a difficult opponent because of the way they play. We have confidence -- we won there last year and are at the top of our game at this moment."
Meanwhile, Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard said the key to their success this season has been “working hard for each other” and “sticking together.”
Liverpool have won eight games in succession and Gerrard told the club’s official website: “We need to keep doing what we're doing. Nothing changes. We don't worry about Manchester City or Chelsea or Crystal Palace or Newcastle -- we worry about West Ham.
“We need to approach it in exactly the same manner we have approached the last eight games. We've had an unbelievable mentality and a winning attitude. We always know that if we work hard for each other and if we do the ugly bits that players don't like doing all the time, we know the nice stuff will come out.
“That's exactly what's been happening. We've been pressing really high, playing with a high tempo, playing at a pace which is difficult for opposition teams to cope with. But it all starts with sticking together and working hard for each other.”