Arsenal v Liverpool: Brendan Rodgers targeting a repeat of last week's thrashing to pile more misery on struggling Gunners
Arsenal are in danger of seeing their season collapse before them and Rodgers is hoping the momentum of last week's 5-1 mauling will carry over into Sunday's fifth round tie
Saturday 15 February 2014
Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers hopes to be able to pile more misery on to Arsenal just over a week after delivering a confidence-shattering defeat at Anfield.
Sunday's FA Cup fifth-round tie at the Emirates represents a chance for the Gunners to bounce back from a miserable few days in which they were hammered 5-1 at Anfield and then held to a goalless draw at home to Manchester United.
Rodgers is aware personal pride will play a big part in Arsenal's motivation and does not believe they will be distracted by a big Champions League game with Bayern Munich next week.
"It is never easy when you get exposed like that but that was more down to our brilliance on the day because the players were outstanding," he said of last weekend's thrashing.
"If you come up against that normally it doesn't happen again for a while and you have time to get over it and build your confidence again.
"Coming across us so quickly afterwards will be interesting to see the effect.
"They have some outstanding players and they will be keen and motivated and players at this level are very competitive and they want to be able to show they have put that past them.
"They will see it as an opportunity to build confidence again, playing at home.
"But if we can show anywhere near the level of the league game then we are in with a great chance of winning."
While Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge, with 42 Premier League goals in 49 combined appearances this season, will pose the main threat, Rodgers believes his on-fire front two are bringing the best out of the players around them with 16 of Liverpool's last 28 goals not attributable to either of his strikers.
"You have great players like those two who give the team confidence and they also open up spaces for others and both are very talented," added Rodgers.
"They are helping making other players better and that is what is making us, as a team, better.
"Luis (asked to play a wider role in recent matches) has shown the true team player he is; we just do what's best for the team and that is what is asked of all the players.
"Luis will always get himself in those goalscoring positions because he roams and arrives in those areas.
"Daniel is better through the middle because of his pace and pace really hurts teams.
"Both are outstanding finishers but both are not asked to do any more than the others and that is the key to our success so far."
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