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Blog - FIFA

Gerrard: Reds must play at high-tempo

Steven Gerrard has urged Liverpool to follow the Everton blueprint to beat Manchester United at Anfield on Sunday.

United's last visit to Merseyside, on August 20, ended in a 1-0 defeat at Goodison Park. And Sir Alex Ferguson's side struggled to cope with Everton's high-tempo performance, urged on by a raucous home crowd.

Gerrard wants Liverpool to earn a first Premier League win of the season by following that template, on what will be an emotionally-charged afternoon.

The match will be Liverpool's first at Anfield since an independent report cleared the club's fans of any blame for the Hillsborough disaster. Both sides will pay tribute before kick off to the 96 Liverpool supporters who died in the 1989 tragedy.

"Everton played at a very high-tempo in that game and the supporters got behind the team, which gave them a huge advantage," Liverpool captain Gerrard told the club website.

"If we can do that - with our fans behind us and playing at a tempo we're comfortable with - it will put Manchester United on the back foot and that's usually when we can force the opposition into mistakes.

"We need to capitalise on that and take our chances. I don't think there will be many chances in the game at either end, so we need to be ready for our chances when they come along.

"It's difficult to put your finger on one thing and say that's the key to winning. But with our support behind us at Anfield and the timing of this game, I'm confident that if we play well we can take maximum points."

Gerrard, who has spent his entire playing career at Anfield, sees Liverpool's meeting with Manchester United as a clash of huge significance.

"For me, it's the biggest game because the Premier League is the biggest league in the world and these are the two most successful clubs," he added.

"I'm not being biased when I say that - I think Liverpool versus Man U is the biggest game. Maybe Barca and Madrid is up there close to that, but for me it's still this one."


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